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October 11, 2012



My God, I hadn't imagined them after all. I remember eating these with vinegar on Bonfire Night in Rochdale as a kid. I must get hold of some! Thanks for a nostalgic recipe.

Andrea - Chocolate and Beyond

Haha! Hickesy, I used to have black peas absolutely sodden with vinegar! They are such a childhood favourite. Thank you for commenting :)


Just bought some black peas from Bury market.... just as I remember, happy days!

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we lancashire lads like the peas with the shell intact and a slight bite to them,, to obtain this salt the peas at soaking stage, also after boiling you should spread out on a baking tray put in the oven 10mins at 140 just to dry off sound as a pound enjoy with salt and vinegar, a nice twist you can add a little chilly powder adds a nice warm twist.

Andrea - Chocolate and Beyond

Thanks for your comment Keith! And those suggestions are great - I will try adding some chilli powder the next time, for sure :)


Does anyone know if they are available from Morrisons?
Originally from Bolton, I now live in norfolk but would love to get hold of these again.
Also I have a 70's Sekiden gun which uses these as ammo, happy days.


Thank you for the recipe. My son lives in London now. He was reminiscing about bonfire night and black peas. His girlfriend, who was raised in scarborough, had never heard of them. They're visiting this weekend so I'm going to cook them. I haven't got cider vinegar so I'm going to add a little ginger drink, (non alcoholic). I'll let you know how we get on. Can't wait to be honest!
JW Bury

Andrea - Chocolate and Beyond

Hi Jeanette, thanks for your comment! Adding the ginger drink sounds interesting! Yes, please do let me know how you get along :)

Hi Glyn! Not sure about Morrisons. You'll probably have more luck in a health food shop I think.


the best black peas i have tasted where at the fair ground they where made by a family called butterworths from rochdale in lancashire

Janet the Preston lass

Hi - i'm just experimenting with a few recipes for parched peas since I discovered they're on sale at booths stores. Being a Preston lass I naturally want them to taste just like off the flag market. Not quite there yet, I think I need to boil them for longer, I've just put half my batch in the oven and boiled half in the bouillon etc. different results, both delicious, but still feel like there's something I'm missing to get the flag market taste. Any further thoughts welcome!


Hi, I found this via a Google search. I am originally from Lancashire (Wigan)and am struggling to find any suppliers of the "Black peas"

I remember eating them as a kid around the bonfire on November the 5th, come to think of it we also had them around the same smouldering embers of the same bonfire on the 6th,7th and sometimes 8th (we liked our bonfire night).

Anyhow, I am sure we used to get them from our local pet shop but with today's H&S that seems frowned on (non food grade).

If anyone finds a link as to where to purchase them could they please share it here.

Many thanks :-)



I love black peas, and love this time of year as I too love to reminisce having them as a child on bonfire night. Theres a butchers on the precinct in Royton Oldham that sells them for a £1 a bag :-)

Sherry. Oldham


I found some in the health shop in Wednesbury, West Midlands, whilst visiting my dad, but that has been over five years ago. The bag was labelled The Health Store. Good luck!


I've just purchased some from a company online called 'Hodmedods' it sells beans and peas.They call them black badgers. I miss them since I no longer live in preston. Gorgeous!


I'm from Rochdale and used to always have black peas on bonfire night, thanks for sharing it brought back great memories!

dave rhodes

Now live in essex and remember black peas and the bonfire on cronkeyshaw with the fair happy days .can't get them down here think I'll have to get the family to post some down thanks for the memories


hi ya,ll does anyone know the calorie intake
signed curios.


MUM AND dad found the peas on sale at the sweet stall in wigan market. ;-)


My mother always made black peas and I have been cooking them for 30 years. To make them taste like the fair ground peas, I soak them over night in salted water, bring to boil and then simmer them for a good few hours with a touch of vinegar in the water, let them cool over night till they are really thick, then boil again the next day with more water and vinegar. Serve with salt and more vinegar.

Joe. Callaghan

In Farnworth and Bolton black peas should have plenty of juice, 'gravey', and plenty salt and vinegar to taste. In Blackburn they call them
Parched peas, that's because they over boil them and dry most of the juice out of them , the Bolton or Farnworth way is best, give it a try. Can anyone remember a stall dedicated to to likes of Black pease, black puddings etc.On Farnworth Market, it was call 'Saidy mays'
Joe Callaghan farnworth.

John Thompson

Anyone who wants to buy black peas, Morrissons are selling 1 kilo bags at I think £2 I bought mine in Tyldesley
They are supplied by -

Whitworths Ltd
Orchard House

Hope this is useful.


Live in Cheshire now but originally from Oldham.Bought lots at £1.50 a bag from a small Asian run food shop on a visit back to Oldham last week.Shop location is just higher up than the Snipe Inn pub which is just opp.Oldham inside market.The guy told me they were harder to come by this year and so were 50p dearer than the previous year.I found a much smaller bag on the inside market for about a £1.00 but walked away.I bought 4 bags so spent £6.00 on them but i need to educate these Cheshire folk.


I live in Preston and we have just got some black peas for a get together and we got them from Preston Market stalls, check your markets to buy them.


Love Love black pease, ive bought some yesterday from Bolton
Market, the inside were the fruit and veg stalls are.
Sharon WigAN.


I have just got some from morrisons in tyldsley £1 a bag and there now in the pan having a good bath..


Just made some,I am coming up 80yrs, had them from being a lad, them days many shops sold them, especially the newsagents,I just soak them overnight, with a spoonful of bicarbonate soda, then boil them up the day after, and tonight I will have some round the t.v.with a dash of salt and vinegar I just love the water the are made in,and finish off with a nightcap.


I'm from Rochdale and like many of the other people who have commented black peas remind me of my childhood. This time of the year coming up to Bonfire night wouldn't be right if there were no black peas. I have vivid memories of my grandma making them for us. I was always taught not to add salt when boiling them up as it would make the skins go tough. There always seem to be loads of peas so I often put them in separate portion sized containers in my freezer to save for a later date when they aren't readily available.
Market stalls are always a good source for finding the peas
but a lot of the large supermarket chains are selling them in the Lancashire towns where they are popular. I have seen them available in Asda, Morrisons and Tescos.It never ceases to amze me how regional a delicacy they are. I always thought everyone had black peas on bonfire night until I moved to Ripon in North Yorkshire to study. I remember asking my mum to bring me a bag up when she visited so I could 'convert' my flatmates.


Just put them in the pan, be ready tomorrow. Got mine from Gordon Riggs in rochdale. Can't wait :p

Foxy lady

Serve black peas in bisto instant gravy and mint sauce with vinegar delicious !!!

Carl Selby


here we have it . maple peas. fascinating.

Debbie  Moulton Royton Oldham

Just bought my supply of black peas from local butchers shop on Royton precinct. Can't wait to devour them with lashings of vinegar. I steep mine overnight with barcarbonated soda, rinse well, cover with fresh water add salt and bring to a rapid boil,then rolling boil for approx 1hr. Serve nice and hot with lots of vinegar. ENJOY!!!!


Bought a bag today in Rochdale market at delicatessen stall 70p .Soaking them now. Margaret


Apparently they are Also known as pidgeon peas and can be bought in any pet food store xxx

Albert gorton

we just got the peas on Accrington market.Albert


dontcha just love 'em! Thanks for the reminder recipe, mine are on the boil as I type! (From a shaw lass)

Mrs T

Tesco in Clitheroe is selling 1 kg for £1 at the moment!

Steve Pilkington

Accrington black peas for those of you that can remember back to the late 50s early 60s. My mum always had a large pan of black peas cooked for bonfire night nieghbours all came for mums peas we had bonfires in the back sreet and dad handled the fireworks if we could afford any.Mum used to buy her peas on a stall on Accrington market.I now live in Sussex but mums tradition for black peas lives on.I get my peas from Country Products Unit 6 Centre Park Tockwith North Yorkshire YO267QF TEL 01423 358858 mail order.
soak peas in large pan 1/2 teaspoon of bicarb per 500ml added to water soak for about 24 hours, drain, rinse put back in pan with a Ham/Gammon Knuckle (remove thick fat and wash salt of before cooking cover contents with fresh water NO SALT or the peas might not soften bring to boil then simmer for about 2 hours or untill ready. laddel out a mug full add seasoning if wanted or just vinegar don,t forget to invite friends and nieghbours enjoy.Bon appetit Steve Pilkington

Brenda Roberts

I got a bag from Leigh Market for £1.00 they are made now and taste delicious


they are now selling them in aldi might just be a bonfire treat not seen them before 1/5/13


Steve since this is a vegan site I can't recommend using a dead pig to make the peas, I'm afraid! But I'm very appreciative of people's input. Happy to see so many local people are making black peas for bonfire night!


Rochdale lass here! Black peas have been soaking all night and we're about to slow cook them :) then bring on the vinegar! Have a great bonfire night everyone.

Amanda Nichols

I now live in Canada, and got my sister to bring some over for me during a recent visit, I want to give them a whirl for old times sake! I used to love them on bonfire night and also walking around Bury Market. My sister got them at the pet store, upon hearing this my Canadian family are even more reluctant to try them than they were when hearing the name Black Peas. Wish me luck, hope they taste like my Mom's did!


I've grown up eating them in Preston Lancashire, Called Parch Peas. If you soak them over night in bicarbinated soda they don't need as much cooking time but still taste great but the vinegar and salt is a must.

Joan B.

Recently I bought a variety of small tins of beans in Morrisons as I am on a soup thing at the mo. One of the tins had this really reminiscent taste but I couldn't place it. I knew it was from when I lived in Bury as a child. I have pinned it down to Black peas, and it is the juice or gravy that reminded me. So, thanks to all the posts here and I am on the hunt for the elusive peas. I'll try Morrisons in Todmorden and then the pet shops!!!


My good lady's great uncle was a legend in Rochdale with his blck pea bell and tricycle. Take a look at this obituary.


Ps currently steeping the peas.


I'd never realised these were a Lancashire thing, I just got one heck of a craving for them. I'm going have to pay a visit back home this year just to stock up on them.

Now, if only I could find a source of "proper" meat pies as well...nirvana!

Ellie Green

Best place to get the bags of dried black peas is the local markets. All the indoor markets round Lancashire sell them. Even seen them on the most unlikely (sweet!!!) stalls. Must be cheaper than health food shops surely.


i got my black peas from tesco in cheadle and didsbury. Husband added herbs and a dash of sour pomegranate juice (to turn it into his persian childhood recipe ). Lovely, but it doesnt beat the cone of peas I had as a lass on bonfire night in Bolton. Im out to show him how its really done.

Kevin Wood

I found them at Tesco, in the "Ethnic" isle.

Peter Murray

I lived in Bolton as a child and well remember treacle toffee, and black pea soup, on Guy Fawkes night. Always a community treat, as were the bonfire,the guy, and the fireworks. The peas were definitely a soup, not a dry dish. One year, having newly redone her kitchen mum used the pressure cooker for the peas. Peas or shells clogged the pressure weight and the relief valve, ending in a mini explosion. Newly redone kitchen got newly redone again.


I am from Rochdale and we used to have a 'black pea' man who used to drive down the street on a motorbike with a side car containing a Bain Marie with a bug supply of black peas. He used to ring a bell and everyone used to go to him with empty bowls to fill. I love my Rochdale roots !


Being a Yorkshire boy who's uncle Jim spent a large part part of his adult life living as a sort of minister trying to pass on some education and culture to the local Lancashire people I spent quite some time in bury in which I found a liking for black peas,can anyone tell me where I can buy some on line please ? I now live in deepest darkest wales trying to do much the same as uncle Jim, educate and culture the local celts ,it's a thankless task but hey someone has to do it, and how to cook them would help. Thanks

David Canvin

I love my Rochdale roots too even though I didn' move to Edmund St until I was 4 years old. We moved away when I was 11 in 1957. The last 2 Augusts I have been back to the town and found Black peas on sale on a stall in Yorkshire St.


Bought some today at Tesco in Prestwich, £1.99 a Kg. My first memory of buying black peas in Radcliffe was ammunition for my pea shooter, got mine soaking now, after soaking overnight, rinsing, how long should I cook them for in a pressure cooker?

Stella Bottoms

As an expat, I remember going to my uncles house in Rochdale. My favourite thing was to go to the fish shop and get fish and chips for tea. We also had the black peas which I thought were so delicious. I used to wonder why my mother never made them. We lived in Yorkshire just over the moors from Rochdale and they were never available at the fish shop there. As you say they are a Lancashire 'thing'.
I have found some over here in America and so now I can remake this childhood favorite. Thanks for sharing. Stella.


Have been telling my Australian friends for decades about Black Peas on Guy Fawkes and could not buy them in OZ until recently. They are called "Dun Peas" or "Maple Peas" which are a better quality if you can get them. I sourced them in Canberra (live in Sydney) at a pet shop. They are used in OZ to feed pigeons. I can once again have them regularly instead of having to wait for my infrequent trips to Bolton in the UK. Like most of your other comments they evoke happy memories. I loved the Manchester Evening News story of the Black Pea Man.

clint rowson

im from Rochdale originally now live in perth Australia just come back from the uk went to bury market and had the best black peas would love to know where to purchase them in perth

Gill Heppy

Thanks all for the memories, there was nowt like black peas and treacle toffee for bonfire night. If you still live in Greater Mcr I've discovered that Greenhalgh's bakers are doing pots of ready made !

colin williams

Bonfire nights as a kid with black peas withloads of juice and vinegar, parkin and spuds cooked in the hot embers until black on the outside but fluffy inside...brilliant. Just bought two 0.8kilo (2lb) bags from the butchers on Huddersfield Road, Newhey at £1.30 a bag. Taking em back to Scotland with me. Thanks for the recipe.

Sarra Simpson

I am a Lancashire lass (Rochdale) living in Yorkshire :-o and no one knew what I was talking about when I asked why no black peas were served on Bonfire Night. They thought I was a little bit strange when I told them you have them in little cups and cover them with vinegar. As if a Lancashire girl living in Yorkshire wasn't strange enough now they thought I was mental. Ha to all the non believers. This stuff is the dog's ....... :-D I WILL be making some this year and carrying on the tradition for my kids.


Oldham indoor market. 99p a bag. Shop around cos some bags look bigger than others. Found 2 stalls selling them.

Howard Sutcliffe

I can remember going to the fair at Hollingworth Lake on the Easter weekend. One of the shops there sold black peas in a cup. That was the only time of the year we used to eat them and I think I looked forward to that more than the fair

Carlos Lorence

I really like this Black peas.taste of it really good.receipe of this i also shared with my friends...


I'm from the Northeast, so hadn't heard of black peas (pease pudding here). But I've now been introduced to them via work colleagues in the Northwest. I've now cooked them for the first time and loved them!

Alf Mellor

I lived in Stalybridge, and we only had Black Peas when the Wakes was on - the Butterworths Stall had huge cauldrons of them and served them in pottery mugs. I live on the coast in West Sussex now and get the peas from asian food shops, but try as I will - I cannot recreate the taste of the Butterworths peas. Oh and my wife thinks I am strange for eating them.


In the black country we call them grey peas! and are served with bacon bits cooked into them but as i am now vegetarian,the bacon is out so i am going to try them as you have them in Lancashire,my wife was born in Blackburn so it feels ok


Great reading every bodies comments on here and reminiscing. Just bought a kilo off ebay for just over a fiver plenty for sale as pet food apparently very good pigeon LOL. Lived in bradford for over 20 years. And never seem them once, since leaving oldham in my 20's. So definitely a regional thing.


I'm a lancahire born lad (1957) originally from Rochdale but now lived in Peterborough. I have fond memories of my mum and dad cooking them in a pressure cooker for Bonfire night where they then had enough to feed the whole street! There was one occasion when they over filled the pressure cooker and the black peas ended up blasted all over the kitchen ceiling! The best ones were always at the fair in Rochdale served in a tea-cup, someone told me that their secret ingredient was to crumble an oxo cube into them just as they are nearly finished cooking.
I bought some recently in a pet shop, I saw them and thought they look like black peas they were labelled "Maple peas" Just about to cook them. All I need now is some Parkin and treacle toffee!!


Just bought 2 kilos of pigeon peas at a shop in Notting Hill..£3-50p...god nows how many parched peas I can make with 2 kilos of dried peas? Doubt anyone in Notting Hill knows owt about 'em.


I was told by our local pet shop that the ones they sell are not "food grade" so it put me off using them for myself.
Bought some this year (2015) from a market stall and was enjoying them until ... one lot I was about to soak had a tiny black beetle on the rim of the container, trying to get out. I squished it with some K Roll and proceeded to wash and then soak the peas. Next morning there was another black beetle floating on the top of the jug they were soaking in. Washed them off again and put them in a washing up bowl so they could be spread out and we could look for beetles - nothing. Put them in a pan and one came up to the top as the water heated up. Put me off so I ditched every single black pea I had.
Have tried ringing all the supermarkets for the packaged variety (Haven was the last one I bought pre-packaged) but nothing. One supermarket informed me that the company they normally got them from had "gone bust". Maybe that accounts for my not finding any.


I now live in Wimbledon,My grandma sent me mine in the post from Leigh Market. You can get them off Ebay. I'm cooking mine in Guinness right now lol. All I need now is Bonfire Toffee and these Southerners can experience a proper Bonfire Night. Thanks for the recipe btw.


I'm originally from Rochdale now living in St Anne's they locals have never heard of them cooking mine now


i live in Bolton and have always cooked black peas for Nov 5th.i have slow cooked some lamb bones and used the water after skimming off the excess fat to cook the soaked peas in .Plenty vinegar and salt to eat.
delicious and not too soggy.

Ron Loversidge

I am from Turf Hill, Rochdale but now live in Australia, for years every FA Cup Final night we used to have an FA party, along with Potato Pie I used to cook Black Pea's and some of the Aussies loved them. I would buy them from the Pet Food suppliers.
Ron The Pom

Allan - Wigan

I live in Wigan and always have black peas on 'bommy neet'. Polished last ones off last night and just got some more on the boil. Cook 'em looooong and with plenty of juice and vinegar. Usually got mine from Wigan market but the stall had shut down. Panic set in but found them at fruit and veg shop opposite Half way House in Pemb.

Paul David

As a Midland chap can I introduce you to 'Grey Paes' which is another name for the maple.
Soak them for 24 hours - them simmer for a few more - then add nothing else but lots of bacon pieces. Simmer for another hour (about).
That's all apart apart from maybe an Oxo cube to taste. Oh, and some fresh crusty bread, of course.
Bloomin' delicious!
[any leftovers taste even better the following day]

Malc Whalley

Just ate the last of my black peas, My Mother used to help at the black pea stall on the Tyldesley wakes week, in the 50s and 60s she wrote down the Recipe try it, Bag of Black Peas,wash, then soak over night with 2 table spoons of Bicarbonate of soda,after the soak, wash again, put in pan add boiling water, add salt and vinegar to taste, wait till mushy, then enjoy.


anyone looking for maple peas to buy... buy from bryn corn suplies at bryn road ashton-in-makerfield just off the A58 at at ashton

Terry Bleakley

I got here by googling for a recipe. I found black peas in the pantry, from a previous trip back home. Bought them from Bury market. I remember that stall on Farnworth market. I went to the grammar school there in the early fifties. I lived in Little Hulton. I married, moved to Atherton and then to Montreal, finally ended up here on the Maine mid-coast. We go back on nostalgia trips almost every year, always looking for reminders of the old days. We always had parkin, treacle toffee and potato pie on bonfire night.
Thanks, Andrea I read this whole blog and loved every minute of it! Got the recipe too! The black peas are soaking.


now available to buy in Rochdale at the new fruit and veg shop on Yorkshire Street near the entrance the wheatsheaf centre. :-) can't wait to cook them up!!


I'm originally from Rochdale and now live in Brisbane, a friend has just brought some black peas over ready for the festivities, can't wait to cook these up 😋

Bolton Lass

Bought them from Bury Market this week...


Anyone know how long they keep once cooked and best way to store


I've no way of getting back up to Milnrow before bonfire night and wanted to have a go at making some black peas, I ordered some Maple Peas from eBay the other night as I couldn't find any others at the time, are these suitable? Think they're for carp fishing but surely once they've been cooked they should be fine if they're the right pea?


I live in Leeds, West Yorkshire (originally from Darwen, near Blackburn) I was just thinking about what we used to eat around bonfire night….I mentioned black peas to a Yorkshire colleague and he had no idea about them. I had to do a google search to prove I wasn’t going mad and came across this site so thanks and I will have to have a look on the market when I’m next over the other side of the Pennines!


Hi, got mine soaking as l write.Anybody in the Rochdale area looking for black peas go to Gordon Riggs garden centre.I was pointed in that direction by a member of staff from Morrison's.That was after going to Sainsbury's and Tesco.They better be good!!!!!!


In the Midlands we call them grey peas and we cook the with bacon bits.


I'm making some as I'm typing for tonight's bonfire a childhood favourite and always will be ja


Thanks for the bacon comment
I'm going to try cooking them with knorr pea and ham stock cube
HOW is this amazing food not stocked in every supermarket?
Lancashire's best kept secret

Ian Bell

i used to remember a van that came to haslingden high school in the early 80's that sold black peas - my work colleagues think i have made this up. i used to love them.

David Needham

I was brought up in Regent Street (No 39) in the 50's and told my children about the black pea man on his tricycle shouting "black peas" and ringing his bell on a Tuesday evening. I visited Rochdale in the late 80's with my fiance and bought black peas from Bury Market to cook when we returned to Poole. Not sure she was too impressed but would love to get hold of some to cook for this years bonfire night for my 2 boys. We live in St Austell so it would be a change from pasties!!!!

Dawn Reverie Austin

I am old enough to remember the barrow man coming around the streets in Preston during the war and selling a me a penny worth of parched peas or penny winkles.

Steve Williams

I am originally from Atherton ( Bent ) now living in sunny Leicester, and I am craving some proper black peas, I always remember as a kid whenever the wakes(Fair)came to town we would go to Butterworths black pea saloon, I have read all the posts and the recipes, however when I last made them I would add some HP sauce and worcestershire sauce and they where as near to the Butterworths I remember. I could jut eat a pan full

Kathleen Rush

I remember the Blackpea man arriving on a Friday night in spotland Rochdale we tuck our own bowls to buy from him love them but struggling to get them here in Rochdale Lancashire

Chris Nuttall

Just read all the comments..fascinating!
I've soaked my black peas from Bury Market overnight, added a little bicarb of soda and now ready to heat on the hob in sunny Walkden.
Thanks for all the info.


Pet shop in Tyldesley and leigh market both sell black peas.

Shenaz Bargit

Village Pet Store Little Lever Bolton will be selling Black peas on line, so watch out in the next few days by Giving us a like on our Facebook page.

K. J.  Wood


British grown, available dried, or, ready-cooked in tins.
Brilliant company, also gives recipes using its products.

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  • I'm Andrea, and am obsessed with creating fabulous food. After I managed to ditch dieting, the reason Chocolate and Beyond was born, it seemed natural to evolve my site into a foodie blog. More so since I also ditched animal produce to be vegan. Now, I love showing how inventive cruelty-free cooking can be. And sometimes I like to rant, too. I wouldn't be myself otherwise :) x

    PS. This blog LOVES your comments! Especially about the food!

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