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A perpetual stew, also known as hunter's pot or hunter's stew, is a pot into which whatever one can find is placed and cooked. The pot is never or rarely emptied all the way, and ingredients and liquid are replenished as necessary. The concept is often a common element in descriptions of "medieval "inns. Foods prepared in a perpetual "stew have been described as being flavorful due to the manner in which the foodstuffs blend together, in which the flavor may improve with age.
- Bread, water or ale, and a companaticum ('that which goes with the bread') from the cauldron, the original stockpot or "pot-au-feu that provided an ever-changing "broth enriched daily with whatever was available. The cauldron was rarely emptied out except in preparation for the meatless weeks of "Lent, so that while a "hare, "hen or "pigeon would give it a fine, meaty flavour, the taste of "salted pork or "cabbage would linger for days, even weeks.
- – Tannahill
In 2015, a New York restaurant had been serving the same perpetual stew for four months.
Various ingredients can be used in a perpetual stew, such as "root vegetables and "tubers (onion, carrot, potato, garlic, parsnip, turnip, etc.) and various meats and "game meats.