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24 September 2014
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Are Faggot and Peas the 'original' take away?
Carl Chinn eats his faggots and peas
BBC WM presenter Carl Chinn eats his faggots and peas in Oldhill
What are you having to eat today? Some warming soup and a sandwich? Or a burger and fries? Perfect comfort food in this cold weather.
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Click here to get a Faggots with Onion Gravy recipe from Antony Worrall Thompson.

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Did you know there is one form of Take Away that's been on sale in the Black Country for more than a century? In fact some say it's the "original" take away food.

Uncooked faggots go into the oven
Uncooked faggots go into the oven
Faggots were developed as a way of using up all the bits of pig that would otherwise be discarded.

The word faggot means a bundle and just as a collection of sticks are tied up with string so the contents of a faggot is wrapped in a piece of caul which is a see-through lacy, fatty membrane which surrounds the pig's stomach. This keeps the ingredients together and the fat prevents it from drying out.

Everything goes into the mincer with some onion and sage. The result is a meatball which is wrapped in the pig's caul. It is then roasted and served with gravy and mushy peas or 'payse'.

Cooked faggots
Here's some I cooked earlier!

Faggots can be eaten hot or cold and when served hot are traditionally accompanied by peas.

The only bit of pig you cannot use is its squeal!

What do you think of the faggot? Email your comments to the BBC Black Country website here. Click here to get a Faggots with Onion Gravy recipe from Antony Worrall Thompson.

Readers comments

I spent the better part of a month in Wales last year and I can tell you, the faggots and peas are tasty! The marrowfat peas take some getting used to for an American. I'd actually have preferred fresh garden peas but I digress. From a culinary standpoint, I found that most of the horror stories I'd heard about "cuisine" across the pond were grossly exaggerated. I enjoyed the faggots and peas, Cornish pastys, bacon butties (y'all have the market cornered on bacon!), yummies from the "chippy" and a delicious concoction that I had at a LIL CHEF restaurant, called a hot beef clangor! YUM! Can't wait to return to the UK for more delicious food!

MEMPHIS MIKE

I have lived in Canada for 35 years and cannot find Faggots but i was born and raised in the Black country, Oldbury and Gornal, and still remember the great taste, my wife who is Canadian also likes them, whenever we visit we make a point of eating Faggots and mushy pays.
Foy

When they are prepared right, 'marvellous.'- Brummie Boy.

Recipe for faggots could only have been devised by someone south of Watford -
Diane Hodgetts, Dudley

 

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