Traditional English Potted Beef is simply lean beef with seasonings such as salt, cayenne, mace, pepper, boiled until very fallen and potted with clarified fat over to prevent oxidation. This is much more 'beef' than the mixed 'beef paste' of modern usage and not dissimilar to the French Rillettes de boeuf
Original Receipt in 'The Art of Cookery Made Easy and Refined' By John Mollard (Mollard 1802)
Take two pounds of the fillet out of the inside of a rump of beef and two pounds of best fat bacon. Cut them small, put them into a marble mortar, add to them a small quantity of parsley, thyme, savory, four eschalots chopped fine, some pepper, salt, two spoonfuls of essence of ham, a spoonful of mushroom powder, sifted mace, cloves, and allspice, a little of each, two eggs beaten, and a gill of rhenish wine. Pound all well together till quite fine; then fill small pots with the mixture, cover with paper, bake it very gently for forty minutes, and when cold cover with clarified butter.
See: Beef Paste
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