Perfect rice - with smoked mackerel and black pudding

This one uses my ‘perfect rice’ recipe. Smoked mackerel is so versatile. The crispy black pudding gives a great bite against the fluffy rice and the smoky flavour of the fish and the mushrooms makes this one of my favourite easy dishes

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking: 30 minutes

You’ll need a saucepan.

Ingredients - serves four

  • Half a small black pudding ring
  • 4 large flat mushrooms
  • 6 smoked mackerel fillets (skin removed)
  • 8oz Basmati rice
  • 16oz water
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • Fresh basil
  • Flaked sea salt
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 1 star anise
  • Drop of olive oil

Get cooking

Place the rice, star anise, peppercorns and bay leaf into a saucepan, together with a pinch of sea salt and the water. Cover with a lid and bring to the boil. Turn to a low heat and leave to simmer very gently for 15 minutes. 

Remove the lid and stir gently with a fork. You will see that the majority of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. Fold a tea towel in half and place over the pan. Place the lid back on a press into place to form a tight fit. Fold the hanging corners of the tea towel onto the pan lid to stop them burning on the flame. Continue to simmer on very low heat for a further five minutes. 

Turn off the heat and leave to stand unopened for another five minutes or until you are ready to add the other ingredients.

While the rice is cooking, remove the skin of the black pudding and cut into small chunks measuring about 1cm. Fry until crispy over a moderate flame in a drop of olive oil. 

Chop the mushrooms and add to the pan just before the black pudding begins to crisp up. 

Flake the mackerel fillets into the pan and stir just to warm through. Add this to the cooked rice and fork through a drizzle of olive oil. 

Garnish with halved cherry tomatoes and ripped basil leaves. Serve with sweet chilli sauce.
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