open Le Boudin in another tab for the five minutes it will take you to read about John Paul O'Connor [above] who makes white pudding within sight of Carrauntoohill [above] in Co Kerry. I met him the other day in Tramore. I was looking after Pat the Salt and nipped up to Supervalu to buy some bread and milk . . . and came away with 250g of white pudding. Hard to refuse a man who has driven 200km to sell something that he believes in. Very nice it was too: it even got a 'like' from The Beloved and she's a vegetarian. O'Connor is about my age, but he missed out on the very expensive education bit; indeed he left school and left the country when he was 13 to go and work in England. One of his jobs was in a sausage factory in London, before he got his start in construction. He has erected steel all over the British Isles and also across the pond in America. The boom was good to him and in 2007 he was employing not only himself but 20 others besides. We treat our entrepreneurs shockin' poor in this country, expecting them to take all the risks, take people off the live register, and put money aside for retirement or disaster.
Everyone was washed up and laid off in the Crash. In 2012, when the last sliver of construction had worked itself through, O'Connor looked across the kitchen table at his wife Kathleen and they agreed they were too old to emigrate again. They decided that they could make a better sausage than the dreadful concoction they had a hand in when they were young - turns out that she had also worked in the sausage trade in London.
Pork (80%), onion, pinhead oatmeal, water, rusk (wheat flour, water, salt), spice mix (wheat flour, rusk (wheat), salt, soya flour, preservative sodium metabisulphite, emulsifier: sodium tripolyphosphate, spice and spice extracts, antioxidant E301, rapeseed oil, herbs and herb extracts, flavour enhancer E621).
- The emboldened words are, as usual, flagged as potential allergens
- E301 is ascorbic acid - vitamin C
- E621 is MSG monosodium glutamate the Queen of Umami.
- sodium tripolyphosphate [ahem that's E452], the emulsifier, we've met before as a 'builder' in the chemistry of detergents. Here it helps keep things damp.