Black pudding stuffed mushrooms with spinach

These are the perfect starter. Two per person should be amazing, and we all know how incredibly fast and lightly spinach gets portioned off. I often find spinach is either a great or an awful starter. As raw salad leaves there is too much per person (so much chewing!) yet when wilted, it’s a-bite-a-person affair! No happy medium. However, in this recipe you do need that bit of green and something to surprise the tastebuds every few mouthfuls, not least because of the indulgence of mushroom-topped with black pudding-slathered in melted cheese… in that order!

What you need

  • 5 very large mushrooms (as big as you can find, they shrink…lots!)
  • 1/2 a round of good black pudding
  • zest of 1/2 lemon (optional, can be overpowering!)
  • 2 handfulls of grated cheese (of your choice, I used pecorino simply because I love it)
  • 2 tblsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • packet of spinach
  • 3 tbsp yoghurt

How you do it

  1. Scrub any dirt off the mushrooms, take off the stems and brush with good quality olive oil.
  2. Chop up the black pudding, or just scrunch up (it’s all going to the same place) and pat it into the inside of the mushrooms as a lining.
  3. Cover with grated zest and finely chopped red chilli (if desired) and cover with shavings of/grated cheese.
  4. Bake at 180 degrees celcius for about 10-12 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, heat a pan with a tablespoon or two of water. Dump in your (cleaned) spinach and put on a lid. Allow to wilt for a few minute before adding in a dash of balsamic. Just before you plan to take it out and serve, put in the yoghurt and stir through, not so much that it’s all combined, but just enough.
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