Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Petite Marmite Pot au Feu

This recipe is very old French home cooking! 
     This looks like a lot of food in the large stew bowl, but the cuts of meat are basically soup stock bones with some meat attached.  This oven baked pot au feu recipe is very easy to make.  The broth is so very rich in flavor!  It is worth the wait for this pot au feu to come out of the oven. 
     There are three traditional meals in a true pot au feu.  The first part of a pot au feu is to eat the chicken in the stewing broth at mid day.  A petite marmite appetizer soup can be served in the afternoon with the vegetables and chicken broth.  (I posted the early stage petite marmite soup recipe in this blog too.) 
     After the lamb, goat, beef or pork bones with meat are added and stewed, then the pot au feu becomes the evening meal.  Petite marmite pot au feu doesn't always look pretty.  It is the flavor and tradition that counts!
     Recipe:  Boil enough water for a very large bowl of soup in a soup pot.
     Add 8 ounces of chicken pieces.
     Bring the liquid back to a boil.
     Reduce the temperature to medium low heat.
     Simmer the chicken for 30 minutes to start the broth.
     Add 2 handfuls of  diced carrot.
     Add 2 handfuls of diced onion.
     Add 2 handfuls of sliced leek.
     Add 2 handfuls of diced celery.
     Add 2 handfuls of chopped cabbage. 
     Add black pepper and sea salt.
     Add 3 cloves of chopped garlic.
     Add 5 pinches of thyme.
     Add 4 pinches of sage.
     Add 1 bay leaf.
     Add 3 pinches of marjoram.
     Simmer for 10 minutes. 
     Pour the broth and vegetables into a deep, high sided casserole dish.
     You can remove the chicken from the pot for a snack at this time or leave it in the casserole dish.  
     Set a few veal neck bone pieces in the pot au feu.
     Place a few lamb neck bone pieces in the pot au feu.  (Be sure that the bones have plenty of meat attached.)
     Place a thick piece of salt pork on top of the broth and vegetables. 
     Partially cover the casserole with a lid or foil, so the steam is allowed to escape when baking. 
     Place the casserole in a 350 degree oven. 
     Bake the pot au feu till the vegetables become tender and the exposed meat turns a light brown color. 
     Remove the bay leaf. 
     Serve the pot au feu in the baking casserole dish or transfer the pot au feu to clean serving bowl.
     The first sip of the broth will put a smile on your face!  It is very rich from the flavor of the cooked soup neck bones.  The meat literally falls off of the bone.  The flavor of the salt pork slice permeates the pot au feu with a rich flavor. 
     Standard recipes say that the meat should be chicken with a darker meat.  Some old petite marmites were started early in the day as a chicken pot au feu.  Then after the chicken was consumed, the broth remained to serve as the base for the fresh bone meat of freshly butchered veal, pork, beef, lamb, and or, goat to be baked with.  The meats are non specific except for one requirement.  The meats must be on the bones that you would make a stock with.  That bone stock soup broth flavor is what makes Petite Marmite Pot Au Feu an exceptionally fine French comfort entree to eat!  So yummy!  ...  Shawna

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