I’m going to start studying French in a couple of weeks and to get in a French mood I made some traditional French cassoulet. It’s a very meaty casserole and I thought it wouldn’t be too difficult to make. And it wasn’t. I found so many different variations of the traditional cassoulet, so I thought I’d make a version of them all and turn it into my own.
Some of the recipes I found used only pieces from pork, but other recipes didn’t even have pork in them. on one recipe it said to use duck with the pork and another wanted me to add some mutton in the pot as well. I figured I shouldn’t take it too seriously and decided to use pork and duck. Here’s what I did.
What you’ll need:
500g boneless pork shoulder
1 duck breast
200g spicy sausages
150g bacon, the more it has fat the better
3-5 gloves of garlic
2 dl dried white beans
1 can of whole tomatoes
thyme and rosemary
whole white peppers
1. Let the white beans soak in water over night.
2. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
3. Prep the meat, onions, tomatoes and carrots; Cut the pork into about 2 inch pieces. Chop the onion and garlic gloves. Slice the bacon and carrots as well. Roughly slice the canned tomatoes into smaller pieces. DO NOT throw the tomato sauce away!
4. Fry the duck breast on a pan grease side down for about 5 minutes. Turn it over and fry for another five minutes. Cut into smaller pieces.
5. Fry the pork in the duck grease and when brownish, set it into an ovenproof pot that has melted butter on the bottom. Fry the bacon and when almost done add the onions and fry a bit more. Add them to the pot as well. Go ahead and add the sliced duck and all the other ingredients in the pot too. EXCEPT the sausages! Don’t forget the tomato sauce that you saved from the can.
6. Mix the ingredients in the pot and add white wine and water until it’s completely covered. Cover with a lid. Cook in the oven for about an hour and twenty minutes. Add the sausages on top and cook for about ten minutes longer. Remove the sausages and cut them into smaller pieces and put them back in the pot.
7. Serve with rice or potatoes or whatever you think would taste great with this casserole.
I must say I was very surprised it turned out as good as it did. I’ve come to the conclusion over the years, that I’m not a very good cook. Though I know how to make most things without needing a recipe, I find it hard to learn new ones. For some reason I get frustrated when trying to follow a new recipe and I easily miss a step or don’t follow it completely. These sort of “just dump it all in and let the oven do all the work” foods are perfect for me, I guess. At least this casserole turned out really good.
Though now that I think about it, it could be the duck fat that did it. That fat is delicious!
With warm hugs and gentle thuds – Keri
This post is part of my 101 things mission to learn a new recipe every month.