Sometimes I miss being little.
On Saturday evenings we would often sit outside as my dad makes a potjie (pronounced poy-key). He would always prep the veggies at half time (in South Africa there are a few things that are more important than watching rugby on a Saturday afternoon) and go full-blast cooking after the game.
Now for those that are not familiar with a potjie (or Bushveld Microwave as my dad calls it!), it is nothing other than a cast iron cauldron that we use to cook outside with on gas or fire. To be honest, gas is better since you can control the heat better. It comes in various sizes also. From a teensy tiny size ¼ that holds about 700ml to a size 25 that holds roughly 70 litres and can feed up to 60 people! For a regular family a number 3 pot is a good size.
There are as many recipes out there as there are potjies, but of course, my dad’s Drunken Chicken Potjie is the best! It is simple, yet very flavourful and only needs a handful of ingredients. It was so nice that I completely forgot to take a picture of it when it was done! I did remember to take a picture of the leftovers though…
2 Whole chickens (cut into portions)
2 onions (cut into chunks)
5 potatoes (cut into eighths)
1 packet of carrot hearts
1 punnet whole courgettes
1 punnet of sliced mushrooms
500g mixed broccoli and cauliflower
1.5 bottles white wine (dad uses Cape Riesling)
100g tomato paste
1 tablespoon Worcester Sauce
Number 3 Potjie
I am pretty sure you can make this in a regular pot on the stove, but then you will lose the yummy cast iron taste that gives potjiekos its unique flavour.
As mentioned beforehand, we were so excited to dig in that I completely forgot to take a picture of the finished dish! I only remembered once we were done eating and quickly snapped a picture of the leftovers…
We have served this with a simple green salad and some rice.