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The Potjie Pot!


(Food cooked in a cast iron pot)

Yet another incredible way of preparing food inherited from our forefathers is how to cook in an old fashioned cast iron pot.

Our great-grandmothers probably had two pots without which they would have been lost.

The most popular one of these was the round bellied, three legged cast iron pot. This often had the legs sawn down so that it could be used on a black coal stove. One of the stove plates was removed and the pot fitted comfortably in this "nest". Soups, stews and meal-in-one dishes (Potjiekos) were cooked to perfection. The rounded shape of the base (almost like a Chinese Wok) ensured that all the juices accumulated at the base of the pot near the heat.

Today iron pots are still popular for outdoor cooking over an open fire, particularly for slow-simmering venison "Potjiekos" or other meat stews.

Some tips
The meat usually comes first. Add a dash of cooking oil in the pot and when it is hot add the meat. Add sliced onions and stir the meat to seal in the flavor. Cook the meat till nearly done.
Add vegetables in layers according to cooking times, carrots at the bottom followed by sweet potatoes, potatoes, pumpkin, mushroom etc.
Arrange the vegetables in layers around the sides forming a hollow for the rice. Marinade or liquid is now added to about 2 cm under the top layer of vegetables.
Replace the lid and DO NOT STIR after this.
Keep the pot simmering till done. Before serving, stir through once to ensure the meat and veggies at the bottom will be dished up and ENJOY!!

We have found that a size 3 pot is big enough to make a splendid meal for a family of 4-6 people!


For any South African recipe click here to email June!

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