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Carlin Peas

I first came across Carlin Peas when I was researching another plant. It was only a brief note on them, but I was inspired to do some more reading. From this I was keen to try and find the seeds in Australian and try and grow some plants of this rare heirloom variety. I also want

to try some of the delicious recipes I found for Carlin Peas.

Carlin Peas are an unusual ancient variety of pea, with a long recorded history of cultivation and consumption. They have a variety of common names , including Maple, Brown, Black and Badgers. Sometimes also referred to as Medieval Mushy peas in recipes. Carlin Peas recorded history dates back to Elizabethan times, late 1500's to early 1600's, but possibly as early as the 1300's, in England.

Carlin Peas can be consumed either fresh or dried, in a number of dishes including soups, stews, and curries. Also used to make a traditional English dish called parched peas. The dried peas are boiled and served with salt and vinegar, then eaten hot or cold. Carlin Peas retain a firm crunchy texture even when they are cooked. I have attached a nice recipe on the end that I am hoping to try.

The peas will need a trellis to grow up. I started my Carlin Pea seeds in mid winter, as that is when I found them and bought some. They are growing on well and I am hoping they produce some pods before the weather gets too hot. So far the spring weather here has been cool and mild, and hopefully these conditions hold out for a bit. I planted them in my vegetable garden, in a spot prepared with a good covering of well rotted manure from the goat shed. To dry the pods leave on the plant until pods dry out.

I do have some spare seeds, if anyone would like to purchase them please click here (Carlin Peas). Cost of seeds will be $5 for 50 seeds.

Parched Peas with Salt and Vinegar


To soak the Peas-

  • 2 1/2 cups dried Carlin Peas

  • 1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

To cook the Peas-


  1. Rinse Carlin Peas under cold running water.

  2. Put peas in large bowl with bicarbonate of soda and cover with cold water. Cover and leave to soak over night.

  3. Drain Carlin Peas and place in a large saucepan, with the carrot, celery and onions. Cover with fresh cold water.

  4. Put the lid on the saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Once boiling turn heat down to medium and simmer for 2-3 hours, until peas are soft and slightly mushy. Stir peas occasionally through cooking to prevent them sticking to the bottom.

  5. Once peas are starting to break up, remove saucepan from the heat. Add salt and vinegar to taste. Serve warm or cold.

This recipe is vegetarian, vegan, and can be made gluten free.


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