We have finally arrived in Australia (our new home) and thought this was the perfect time to post our favourite chicken potjie recipe as a tribute to South Africa. This recipe was shared with us by an uncle who has won many a potjie competition with this recipe.
Potjie – The Afrikaans word for “Little pot”
Kos – The Afrikaans word for “food”
Potjiekos is a traditional South African meal and originates from the Voortrekker days, it is a stew-like meal that is cooked in a heavy cast-iron pot over coals. It is simple and easy to prepare the dish as long as you stick to a couple of rules.
- Potjies need to be cooked slowly, it is best (if possible) to have two fires going so you can feed the fire under the potjie pot as you go
- The ingredients should be layered in the pot according to cooking times – meat at the bottom, vegetables that take the longest to cook on the second layer and so on
- Do not stir the pot, but rather layer the meat and vegetables and let the ingredients cook in their own goodness
- Each time you add a new layer to the pot make sure that there is still enough liquid to ensure nothing burns
- If more liquids need to be added to the pot, pour them down the sides and not straight into the centre
- When storing your potjie pot wipe the inside with a bit of oil on some paper towel and then fill the pot with newspaper to prevent it from rusting
- Olive oil
- 900g Chicken pieces with skin on (thighs, drumstick, breasts)
- 1 jar of braai sauce (the Castle braai series barbeque sauce is delicious)
- 1 can of beer
- 1/2 packet brown onion soup powder or 2 tbs cornflour mixed in 1/2 cup water
- 1 Large onion – diced
- approx. 10 baby potatoes
- half a butternut – cut into 2cm cubes
- 3 carrots – cut into 2cm cubes
- a small packet of Brussel sprouts
- 3 small baby marrows – cut into 2 cm cubes
- 1 small head of broccoli – cut up
- 1 small packet of green beans – tops and tails cut off
- 1 punnet of button mushrooms – halved
Get the coals ready for a potjie, place the potjie pot over the coals and add olive oil, once this is heated add the onions. Fry the onions until they become translucent, then add the chicken to brown on all sides.
Once the chicken is browned, add the can of beer and braai sauce and stir until all mixed in, let this simmer for about 30 minutes.
Now it’s time to add the vegetables that take the longest to cook – potatoes, butternut and carrots. Put the vegetables on top of the chicken and sauce and do not stir! Let this cook for a further 45 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
Next, you need to add the Brussel sprouts, baby marrows and broccoli – place these on top of the previous layer and do not stir. Let this cook for a further 20 minutes with the lid on.
Lastly, we add the green beans and the mushrooms, place these on top of the previous layer and still do not stir, these don’t need to cook for long so cook for about 15 minutes with the lid on.
Now it’s time to open up the pot again and check that all the vegetables are cooked. It is also time to add the thickener (corn starch or brown onion soup) if needed and then you can give the potjie a good stir to mix up all the sauce, veggies and chicken. Let the potjie cook for a further 10 minutes to make sure the thickener is cooked in and then you are ready to serve! The chicken would have cooked off the bone and should be all tender and succulent!
Serve with rice, bread or samp.
Enjoy! And let us know what you think of the recipe.