Mixed Boiled Meats (And Homemade Meat Broth)

Bollito Misto

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    and makes at least 2 quarts broth

Appears in

How to Cook Italian

How to Cook Italian

By Giuliano Hazan

Published 2005

  • About

Mixed boiled meats may not sound particularly appetizing to the uninitiated, but it is one of Italy’s most refined and delectable dishes, one whose successful execution can be a determining factor in a restaurant’s reputation. At its most ambitious, bollito misto may include close to a dozen different meats, such as beef, veal, chicken, pork, turkey, pheasant, calf’s head, tongue, and cotechino and zampone (two types of boiled sausage). Such a bollito misto is no small feat, requiring many different pots, and is best left to a restaurant kitchen.

The following recipe requires only one pot and has the additional benefit of producing a wonderful Italian meat broth. It has three meats: beef, veal, and chicken, but if you wish, you can make it with only beef and veal or beef and chicken. Italian broth is quite different from dark French meat stock. It is a delicate, light broth made with raw meats and vegetables, not the oven-roasted bones and vegetables that give French stock its intense, concentrated flavor. The meats of a bollito misto are very good served just with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of coarse sea salt, with Smothered Red and Yellow Peppers, or Salsa Verde. The marrow from the bones is delicious with a few drops of lemon juice and a sprinkling of salt.


  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1 medium ripe tomato or 1 canned whole peeled tomato
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 2 or 3 ribs celery
  • 1 sprig flat-leaf Italian parsley
  • 1 chicken, about pounds
  • to 2 pounds veal neck or rib bones
  • 1 pound veal breast or shoulder
  • 1 pound beef chuck
  • 8 beef marrow bones
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns


  1. Peel the carrots and the fresh tomato. Peel the onion and cut it in half.
  2. Put all of the ingredients in a large stockpot and add enough cold water to cover by 2 inches. Cover the pot, place over high heat, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to very low, uncover, and use a skimmer or ladle to remove the scum that rises to the surface. Cover the pot and cook at a very gentle simmer for at least 3 hours.
  3. If you will be serving the meats right away, lift them out of the pot, carve the chicken, slice the meats, and serve on a platter with a little of the broth to keep them moist.
  4. Strain the broth into a large container and set aside to cool. Refrigerate for up to 2 days. The broth can also be frozen for up to 2 months. As soon as the broth has chilled and a layer of fat has solidified on the surface, take the broth out of the refrigerator and lift the fat off with a slotted spatula or spoon. Freeze in ice cube trays. Pop the cubes out of the trays and store them in resealable freezer bags in the freezer. The cubes are easier to thaw than broth frozen in larger containers, and they are convenient when you only need a small amount of broth.


If you are not going to serve the meats right away or if you have leftovers, place the cooled meats in a container with enough broth to cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days. When you are ready to serve, reheat the meat in the broth.