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Country Cassoulet

Cassoulet Maison

  • Author: La Cuisinière
  • Prep Time: 48 hours
  • Cook Time: 90 mins
  • Total Time: 49 hours 30 mins
  • Yield: 8 serviings
  • Category: Main
  • Cuisine: French

Description

This recipe for our home style Cassoulet is easy to prepare and a real one dish meal but it’s far from being the proverbial 30 minute meal.


Ingredients

  • 16-24 ounces Goya Cannellini Beans
  • 8 ounces Citterio cubed Pancetta (2 packs).
  • 7 ounces pork rind or fat back
  • 4 large carrots, sliced lengthwise
  • 2-3 large onions
  • 3-4 cloves of fresh garlic. If you cannot find sausage seasoned with garlic, add a couple more cloves.
  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • 3 medium tomatoes, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 4 ounces bread crumbs
  • 1 large saucisson à l’ail (garlic sausage, peeled and sliced
  • 4 individual pork sausages
  • 6 large boneless chicken thighs or leg/thigh pieces
  • 1 pound pork country ribs
  • 7 ounces Dartagnan duck fat
  • 2 teaspoons bouquet garni.
  • 2-3 whole cloves
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch chopped, flat leaf parsley
  • Freshly cracked pepper to taste
  • Salt to taste.

Instructions

  1. In a large Dutch oven, cover the dried beans with fresh water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook on a very low boil for about 10 15 minutes. Drain the beans.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe1

    Dried beans are covered with fresh water and brought to a boil. Simmer 10-15 minutes.

  2. Place drained beans back into the Dutch oven, along with the pancetta, the pork rind, the carrots, 1 onion, 4 cloves of garlic and the bouquet garni.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe3

    Drained beans are back in the dutch oven with onions, garlic, carrots, pepper and herbs.

  3. Cover the beans and other ingredients with fresh cold water.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe4

    To beans, we added the pancetta and the thick sliced smoked bacon

  4. Place lid on Dutch oven and simmer for a full hour. After about 30 minutes, season the beans with salt and pepper. The beans should be just about cooked but not completely . The beans will finish cooking during the final step in the cooking process.
  5. In a separate pan, add duck fat and cook until golden but not burned: the remaining onions, the shallot and 2-3 cloves of garlic – all chopped finely. Add the peeled tomatoes, the tomato paste, salt and pepper to taste.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe11

    Combine well with the onion mixture and simmer for a few minutes to blend flavors. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. This tomato mixture is going to season the entire pot of beans!

  6. Add well combined onion/tomato mixture to the beans.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe12

    With tomato mixture added to the beans, we’re almost done. Double check the seasonings. After this step, it becomes more difficult to season the entire dish. Don’t forget that the meats will impart their own smoky flavors.

  7. Gently pan fry the pork sausage in a separate dry pan. Once cooked, cut into 1 inch pieces and add to the beans.
  8. Add a few tablespoons of duck fat to the same frying pan and lightly brown the remaining pieces of meat. You can cut the boneless chicken thighs into 1 inch cubes before adding to the bean mixture. If you opt for the thigh/leg pieces, leave them whole. They will become a “portion” when serving.
    classic-french-cassoulet-recipe13

    Oh..did I mention that this is a “Sausage” version? See how versatile this recipe can be? When you can’t find duck, use a variety of gourmet sausages – in this particular case…fresh kielbasa and smoked andouille. Step 8: Place dutch oven in a slow oven and bake at 325 degrees for a couple hours. Check often to make sure beans are not “dried out”. Add broth as necessary. When nearly done, sprinkle with bread crumbs and bake long enough to brown the crumb layer.

  9. A cassoulet is usually baked in a special earthenware crock called a cassole.
  10. Lacking the “real thing”, this recipe for cassoulet can also be baked in a large (at least 6 quart), oven proof, casserole dish, a cast iron dutch oven, or a Le Creuset stoneware 10-quart roasting dish.
  11. Shh…don’t tell anyone but I’ve even used my slow cooker for the final cooking step. Whatever works, right?
  12. To complete your recipe for cassoulet, in your casserole dish, layer the meats and the beans, finishing with a layer of beans. Add any reserved pan juices. If you are short on liquids, have a quart container of chicken broth handy. The beans may need more liquid to cook completely tender.
  13. Place in oven set at 325 degrees and bake for about 1 and half hours or until beans are fork tender.
  14. Combine chopped parsley and bread crumbs. Sprinkle over beans during last 30 minutes of cooking time. Bread crumbs should be golden but not burned.classic-french-cassoulet-recipe-header
  15. Note: The amount of dried beans to use depends entirely on how many people you plan on feeding and if you prefer more beans than meat. I use the equivalent of 1 1/2 lbs or close to 20 ounces of dried beans.

Keywords: cassoulet, one pot meal

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