Many years ago, in the small farmhouses of rural Ireland, the modest income of the household was subsidised by the making of black pudding which was sold by the butchers of nearby market towns along with eggs, butter and other farm produce.
One such farmhouse was that of Johanna O'Brien at Sam's Cross near Clonakilty in West Cork. Johanna made black pudding using ingredients and a secret spice recipe supplied by Philip Harrington, whose butcher shop was at 16 Sovereign Street (now Pearse Street) in Clonakilty. When Johanna eventually retired from the onerous task of making the very popular black pudding, it was passed back to Harringtons. The recipe has not changed to this day and has been used to make Clonakilty Blackpudding since the 1800s.
The Secret Recipe
In the 1880s, Philip Harrington continued to make the black pudding which he also sent overseas to emigrants who longed for the taste of home. The precious recipe was faithfully handed down to Philip’s family and for almost a century, the black pudding was made by Paddy Allman, Dan Harrington and Con O’Callaghan.
The 1960s saw the transfer of the business and staff to Patrick McSweeny, who sold the shop and unknown asset of the secret recipe to his nephew Edward Twomey in 1976.