“Salad” and “Christmas” are not two things that often go together. But this salad is not your typical healthy option. There are so many flavours combining in this recipe. And if you’re looking for a vegetarian option, it works just as well if you remove the back pudding and just add a bit more cheese and walnuts!

I love the peppery flavour that comes from the rocket, but I know rocket can have a bit of a marmite effect on people! So feel free to use any salad leaves you prefer.

Ingredients (serves 4): 

1 chub black pudding (we love Kelly’s of Newport or clonakillty), thickly sliced

Olive oil, for frying the black pudding

4 handfuls rocket leaves

100g blue cheese

2 pears (conference if you can get them), sliced into small wedges

For caramelised walnuts

125g halves/pieces

50g white granulated sugar

1 tbsp unsalted butter

For the dressing

½ tbsp honey

½ tbsp dijon mustard

¼ tsp fine sea salt

¼ tsp fine freshly crushed black pepper

30ml balsamic vinegar

90ml extra virgin olive oil


To make the dressing, simply put all the ingredients into a jar, close the lid and shake well until combined. Leave to the side.

For the caramelised walnuts, pop the walnuts, sugar and butter into a non-stick pan on medium heat.

When the sugar mixture starts melting, stir constantly until all sugar is melted and the nuts are coated. Transfer immediately onto a sheet of parchment paper and separate the nuts right away to avoid them clumping. Leave to cool.

Clean the pan and heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in it over a medium heat. Cook the black pudding for a few minutes each side until cooked through and crispy. Pop on some kitchen paper to dry any excess oil.

While the pudding is still warm, put the the salad leaves in a bowl and crumble over the black pudding and blue cheese and top with the pear slices and caramelised walnuts. Drizzle with the dressing and serve immediately.