Pot au Feu

Preparation info

    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Plagiarist in the Kitchen

The Plagiarist in the Kitchen

By Jonathan Meades

Published 2017

  • About

A crock of folklore and some very bogus science is attached to this dish. Ignore.

The cooking times of the meats vary considerably. However the meats reheat at about the same rate. And it gains from reheating. So cook the meats separately one day and assemble them together the next.


  • 6 carrots
  • 6 fennel bulbs
  • 6 turnips
  • 2 celeriac
  • 6 leeks
  • 1 cabbage
  • 12 onions
  • 12 cloves garlic
  • 750g beef brisket
  • 750g beef shank
  • 1 duck
  • 1 chicken – a boiling chicken if available
  • 6 marrowbones, split lengthways
  • juniper berries
  • bay leaves
  • stock


Simmer the carrots, fennel, celeriac, turnips. Later add the leeks, which take less time to cook.

Blanch the cabbage and simmer by itself.

A great deal of stock is required. All the meats must be submerged. All pots must be skimmed regularly.

Put the beef with half the onions, garlic and aromatics in stock and simmer for 3–4 hours.

Divide the rest of the garlic, onions, etc. between the chicken and the duck.

A boiling chicken (not a broiler) will need at least 2 hours in stock, which it will enrich immeasurably. A roasting chicken will take 50–60 minutes.

A duck will cook within 60–70 minutes, again in stock.

Allow all ingredients to cool when they have cooked and remove them from the cooking liquids. Refrigerate overnight. Remove the fat from the meat stock.

Reheat everything together in the meat stock. Do it gently. Add vegetable stock if needed. Roast the marrowbones in a very hot oven. Scrape out the marrow and add it to the broth.

My preference is to serve the broth, vegetables and meat together in soup plates rather than as two separate courses.

Serve with Tomato sauce 1 or Green sauce or Aillade or horseradish cream. Not too much of any of them.