Pot au feu

Pot au feu

Kitchin Suppers
Laura Edwards

This classic French country-style dish is one of my favourites. It’s also versatile, as you can vary the meats and vegetables – I’ve included a ham hock here, which isn’t traditional but it works well with the other flavours. To fully appreciate the meal, mustard and gherkins are a must.


Quantity Ingredient
1 ham hock
1 smoked sausage, about 250g
200 g piece pancetta
500 g piece beef flank
1 garlic bulb, halved horizontally
6 black peppercorns
Bouquet garni
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, peeled and quartered
2 carrots, peeled and halved lengthways
1/2 celeriac, peeled and cut into 4 pieces
2 turnips, peeled and halved
2 leeks, trimmed, washed and halved lengthways
1 savoy cabbage, cut into quarters
thyme sprigs, to garnish

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
english mustard


  1. Put the ham hock, smoked sausage, pancetta and beef flank into a cooking pot and pour on enough cold water to cover. Slowly bring to the boil and skim off any scum from the surface; this is the only time the stock should come to the boil.
  2. Add the garlic, peppercorns, bouquet garni and a pinch of salt to the pot. Lower the heat and cook gently for 3 ½ hours; the stock should be below simmering, with just the occasional bubble breaking the surface.
  3. Check the pieces of meat at this stage by insert a roasting fork into the thickest part; if the meat yields easily, it is nearly cooked, which is as it should be; if not cook, for a little longer.
  4. Now add the onion, carrots, celeriac, turnips, leeks and cabbage wedges to the stock and cook gently for a further 30 minutes. Use a small knife to check each vegetable to ensure it is cooked.
  5. When ready to serve, divide the meat into portions and place in warm serving bowls. Add a portion of vegetables to each bowl and a ladleful of the stock. Grind over some pepper, garnish with thyme sprigs and serve with mustard and gherkins.
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