Mixed boiled meats

Today we want to discuss, and obviously make, a really tasty main course dedicated to all lovers of meat. It’s a winter dish, perfect for the family to enjoy together at a Sunday lunch, the table laden with the simple but authentic flavours of times gone by. This is the ‘mixed boiled meats’, and you can decide whether you want to make it with several pieces of beef, including the tongue and the tail, or with different types of meat. It should be served, as explained by our chef, with sauces and relishes of various kinds, such as horseradish sauce, and the obligatory side dish of potatoes, best of all if mashed! Or, if you are from the northernmost regions of Italy, you may decide to serve it with a nice hot polenta. And, perhaps, with a ‘peperonata’ or ‘sweet pepper stew’, obviously just freshly made. So, here’s the recipe for you which we have learnt directly from our friends in Piedmont, the authentic experts in the preparation of Italian mixed boiled meats.


  • oxtail 500 grams
  • beef tongue 500 grams
  • beef 500 grams
  • carrots 60 grams
  • onions 60 grams
  • celery 60 grams
20 minutes Total time
180 minutes Active time
Serves 3 persons
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Bring a large pot of water to the boil, salt it lightly and place the vegetables in it to boil. When the water has started to boil, add the piece of lean beef, then the tongue and finally the oxtail and simmer for 3 hours. Your ‘boiled meat’ is ready, an unfailing classic of traditional Italian cookery. Serve with some horseradish sauce or with dips of various kinds.

If you want to get a good beef stock you need to put the meat into the water still cold and then turn on the heat; on the contrary, if you are interested more in the final quality of the meat, put it in the water when already boiling.
In the town of Mantua, in the province of Alessandria, every year there is a festival of this dish of Italian boiled meats. If you're in the area on the occasion of the patron saint, San Lorenzo, don’t fail to go into town for a nice plate of boiled meats with mustard or with the traditional green sauce made with anchovies and parsley (about which secret recipe we know no more).

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