Melt the lard in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over high heat, taking care not to burn the fat.
Add the onions, rutabaga, carrots, and leeks to the hot fat and brown for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon and reserve.
Raise the heat and add the beef to the pan and brown on all sides. Return the browned vegetables to the pan with the bacon pieces and bay leaf and thyme.
Cover the meat and vegetables with cold water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 2 hours, or until the beef is tender.
Remove the beef from the pan and reserve. Add the potatoes and bring back to a boil and cook for another 20 minutes or until cooked.
Meanwhile, once the beef is cold enough to handle, cut into 2-inch/5-cm cubes and add back to the potatoes and cook for 10 minutes more.
Season well with salt and pepper and serve while piping hot.
The beauty of this recipe is you have two dishes in one. The broth from the recipe can be served first as a soup or starter course, followed by the meat, potatoes, and vegetables as a main.