Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Claudia Romeo: We're in Bury, Lancashire, England, and we're about to visit a black pudding company. Black pudding is that one item in an English breakfast plate that you either love or hate. Why? Because it has blood in it. But it is also that one item that has the most history, especially here in Lancashire, which is known for being the county that brought it to fame. So it's time to see how it's made. Let's go! In Bury, we met with Richard Morris, production director at the Bury Black Pudding Company. His grandfather was a butcher, and it is his black pudding recipe that the company uses today. Richard Morris: People have this idea of black pudding as, it's all bits of animals and stuff. There's no meat in a black pudding. There's blood in a black pudding, but there's no meat. It's cereal-based. Claudia: Black pudding starts with a dry mix of pig blood, seasoning, rusk, and oatmeal. And when we say dry, we mean this. Seriously? [laughs] Richard: Yeah. You'd never guess. It's actually a dried blood. So, if you smell that, what would you...? Claudia: Yeah, it just smells like herbs. Yeah, it smells like the seasoning. Richard: Yeah, the seasoning. Claudia: There's no blood, any blood smell at all. Richard: No, it's a nice aroma. And we use dried blood because it's developed to a certain parameter, so it's very safe, food safe. Claudia: What is the difference with liquid blood? Richard: It's much more consistent. Using fresh blood, that can change with different animals, what they've been fed on. So this is very consistent product, which fits what we do. We also have rusk then, which is breadcrumbed flour, used heavily in manufacture of sausage. That's what gives sausage a fluffy texture. Claudia: Oh, I see. Richard: And we also have oatmeal as well. So, oatmeal that's been ground, so it's a fine oatmeal. And that, again, if you added water to that, it would go a bit stiffer. So the two together make a nice texture. Claudia: Oh, yeah, 'cause they complement each other. Richard: Yeah, exactly. I think heavily in England, especially north of England, anything that's got lumps in it, you gotta bite two or three times. They call it gristle round here. [Claudia laughs] Chorizo and that sort of sausage are quite firm, and that's more European. Around here, especially north of England, it needs to be soft and very palatable. Claudia: OK, so that is the taste. Richard: Yeah, just regional things. Claudia: Regional taste. Another two ingredients are barley and fat. Unlike the rusk, oatmeal, and blood, they will be cooked before being added to the dry mix. Richard: The barley itself comes in loose like this. When we cook it up in these, we leave room for it. It will swell up to about three, four times the size. Claudia: Oh, wow. Looks like a Christmas sock. Richard: [laughs] Yeah, yeah. Claudia: It does! Richard: This is pork fat, so if you think of a pork chop, where the meat is, the white piece of fat there, this comes in from Denmark, where they have fatter pigs. In England, the pig, the fat's like this. So we don't have fat pigs. So this white piece of fat, it comes in, in strips, which we have here. Claudia: Oh, wow. I didn't even notice that. It looks like textile, you know? Richard: That's it, yeah. So, we got a strip there. Claudia: Oh, no, it does look like meat, actually. Richard: And then this is then diced. So, this is the high quality. There is no lean meat on this at all. So we're just after the fat. Claudia: And this one is gonna be cooked, yeah? Richard: Yeah, we dice it on a machine. We weigh it into the stocking net again. So we, from here... Claudia: Ooh, another sock. Richard: We take it up, from there, and we pop it into that. Claudia: And this one is gonna shrink, or? Richard: Yes, it will just shrink slightly as it starts to give the moisture out of it, and the flavor. The barley expands. This just reduces slightly, yeah. Claudia: And one net is for one batch? Richard: Into a mix, there's four nets go into a mix. Yeah. I'm giving you my recipe right now. [laughs] Claudia: OK, wow. Might have to write this down then. [laughs] Richard: Yeah. No, no, don't do that. Claudia: Barley and fat are cooked for one hour. Meanwhile, onion and water are mixed in this giant container. When ready, they will be joined by the dry mix, containing blood, oatmeal, and rusk. Richard: And then there's a motor on here. Basically, it will just, it's like when you whisk something up, but this does it 4,500 revs. So it just whisks it up really quick, and basically we rehydrate the product, so you've got, like, a gravy consistency, where the dry blood's in it, the seasoning, the rusk, the oatmeal, the flour, the onions, and you've got your base mix there. Claudia: OK. So, wait, this one is the barley that you were showing me earlier. Richard: Yeah. Claudia: Wow, and it's grown so much in size, you were right. Richard: Yeah, this is the barley you saw previously. If I pick one up, you'll see exactly the same, from there. See how it's swollen up? Now, that's cooked perfectly. Claudia: So, this one is about, it was, like, 2 1/2 kilos, and now it is? Richard: Yeah, it's about 10 kilos now. Claudia: Wow. Richard: We weight check it, so it's right. If that was overcooked, it'd be 11, 12 kilos. We wouldn't use that. Claudia: So Christmas sock before Christmas, and Christmas sock after. Richard: Exactly, yeah, exactly. Wow, this is like a gym test. Claudia: I know, I can see you with a couple - Richard: [laughing] And I'm shaking. Claudia: And you can do, like, a lunge thing, no? Richard: Yeah. Claudia: So, I see something else in here, though. There's not just barley. Richard: Well, this is fat, diced fat, that we showed you earlier. Again, this has been cooked up, if you notice it's not swollen up, it's just cooked out, and it actually loses the bits. We only use, in our products, only 3% fat, and those are the actual small, white pieces you see in the end product. If you don't want the fat, don't eat the small pieces, and you're on 0% fat. Claudia: So you can really skip it. Richard: Yeah, exactly. Claudia: Barley and fat are then added into the mix. Fat is mixed gently, not at high shear, to not break the dices. The mix is now ready. It's so brown! Richard: Yes, like chocolate! Claudia: Yeah, it does look like chocolate mousse, to be honest. Richard: Tastes a bit different to chocolate, but, yeah, it's not bright red or anything like that, people associate with blood. It's a cereal mix with a blood base, so it's a chocolaty, velvety sort of touch, yeah. Claudia: But the color comes from the dried blood? Richard: Yeah, it does, yeah. Claudia: This is what gives it its color. Richard: Yeah, that's the main part of it. Claudia: The mix is stuffed in a natural casing made of beef intestine. That is super quick! Richard: So, that's the intestine that's been filled out with the mix. This is a portioning-control machine, like you'd see with sausage fillers. And what it's actually doing, it's spinning the product. So it's doing that so quick, if you see from there. Claudia: So that you can portion it. Richard: And that's one portion that we then link into a black pudding. Claudia: There you go, nice. And it's always this shape, right? Richard: It's always this shape. Claudia: You can't have it as just a straight sausage. Richard: And you can see with the linking, we tie that together with string there, and then there, and then there. And we use the string to tie it up. So, one's just been done here. Claudia: Let's see. Oh, so you have a nice group, yeah. Richard: See these, they're tied up, all the same, same weight, right through. And they're ready for cooking. Claudia: It's nice. Nice black color, no? Richard: Yeah. You will see now when it goes in, it's a grayish look, and then it goes black after cooking. Claudia: After cooking, all right. Richard: Hence the name, black pudding. So, that's the very traditional process that we still teach that to this day. A 100-year-old process, maybe longer. It's tied together. You touch it, it's smooth. Claudia: Wow, yeah, that is very smooth. Oh, honestly, there is no grains at all. It's just like when you brush your hands through your hair, something like that. Richard: Yeah, yeah, it's silky smooth. Claudia: Super smooth. That is. What about the casing, are you supposed to eat it? Richard: The casing can be eaten. It is edible. It's natural. Personally, I don't. I take it off, 'cause it's quite thick.