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Moroccan Black-Eyed Peas (Cowpeas) Recipe - Ful Gnaoua



Black Eyed Peas

Photo © Christine Benlafquih

These delicious Moroccan-style beans are stewed with tomatoes, onions, garlic and Moroccan spices. Easy to prepare, you can serve them as a side or vegetarian main dish with Moroccan bread. Also try Khlea and Black-Eyed Peas.

The recipe calls for dried black eyed peas, also known as cowpeas. In Morocco, they're called ful gnaoua (gnawa), a name which literally translates to "Guinea bean."

Cooking time is for a pressure cooker. Allow double this time if using a conventional pot.

Soak the dried black eyed peas in cold water overnight, or drop them in boiling water for a minute, then soak off the heat for 1 hour.

Serves 4.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups (250 g) dried black eyed peas (cowpeas), soaked
  • 2 tomatoes, grated
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or pressed
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil


Drain the soaked black eyed peas, and mix them with the remaining ingredients in a pressure cooker or pot. Add 3 1/2 to 4 cups of water, and bring to a simmer.

Pressure cooker method. Cover, and cook on pressure over medium heat for about 35 minutes. Check to see if the black eyed peas are tender. If not, add a little water if necessary and cook for another five minutes with pressure.

Once the beans are cooked, reduce the liquids so that the beans are quite saucy, but not watery. Adjust the seasoning if desired, and serve.

Pot method. Cover, and simmer the black eyed peas over medium heat for an hour or longer, until the beans are tender and sitting in a rich sauce. Check the water level occasionally during the cooking, adding a little more if necessary. Adjust the seasoning if desired, and serve.

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