Mutton is without doubt the best meat to use for a soupy broth like this and it will give maximum flavour and fragrance to the broth itself. You will probably need to ask your butcher to order mutton in advance, although some butchers are coming round to the fact that mutton is back in vogue and may well have it in stock. A gamey broth like this is perfect to take in a Thermos on an autumn day's fishing or shooting trip, or on a long walk in the country.
250-300g mutton neck fillet, or boned shoulder of mutton, cut into rough 1cm dice
1 onion, peeled and finally chopped
1/2 tsp chopped thyme leaves
100g maple peas or carlins
2 litres lamb or chicken stock, or a couple of good quality stock cubes dissolved in that amount of hot water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small leek, well rinsed, trimmed and cut into rough 1cm dice
2 carrots, peeled if necessary and cut into rough 1cm dice
1 celery stalk, peeled if necessary and cut into rough 1cm dice
1 small swede or turnip, peeled and cut into rough 1cm dice
A few leaves of green cabbage, stalks removed and cut into rough 1cm dice
1tbsp chopped parsley
Put the mutton, onion and thyme into a large saucepan and cover with the stock. Season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper, bring to the boil and simmer for 1 hour.
Add all the vegetables, except for the cabbage, and simmer for another 30 minutes.
Add the cabbage and parsley and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Season again with salt and pepper, if necessary, and serve