Cassoulet must be one of the Top 10 make ahead dishes that tastes utterly superb, the longer it has been sitting around. The flavors and textures that result from white beans, tomatoes, spices, sausages, duck confit, etc. are just COMFORT FOOD in capital letters. cass2Mrs. MM doesn’t venture into the kitchen too often but when she does, it is almost always to tackle some major recipe that takes hours and hours to do. She once made a lobster bisque for a Christmas Eve dinner that took eons to make, in fact time spread out over three days if I recall correctly… She decided that cassoulet was the solution to our make ahead dilemma and it worked perfectly with the four salads that were served as appetizers… I have personally never made cassoulet so I was intrigued how this would turn out. She used this recipe from Gourmet Magazine, sourced online at Epicurious.

The preparations were extensive and the trips into the kitchen frequent and accompanied by “oh, my gosh, it is SOOO HOT,” accompanied by fanning oneself vigorously cass3and complaining of potential “aroma cling” which is what happens when you cook and your clothes smell like the dish you are cooking… At any rate, the result was fabulous, and not only was it good that night, it was even better the next day when reheated. There is just something magical about several kinds of fat (from the sausages, the duck, etc.) combined with beans in a slow slow cook that yields this satisfying dish… If you have the time, patience and ingredients, this is soul food for a few or many… We served this with a Chapelle D’Ausone, Saint Emilion Grand Cru, 1997, brought by our guest that evening. A very nice meal indeed…


12 Responses

  1. I adore dishes like this! Slow cooking rules…and this type of “beans and all sorts of meats in a pot” kind of dish is the queen of it all! Your photo has me drooling…

    So, down to business then, where do you get your duck confit (homemade? Terry’s?)? And what are your fave beans to use (will you be kind enough to share the brand and store? It may help in my fabadas too :))?


  2. Duck confit which is the key ingredient in cassoulet – prepared in a well respected time-honored slow method of cooking drowned in duck fat yielded moist, tender and flavorful meat. Have seen confit made both on stove top and in the oven required at least 12 hours of baking/cooking just barely simmering just see specks of tiny bubbles forming on the outer edge of the cooking vessel. If big bubbles formed they usually tamed the fire. I like duck confit with boiled salted potatoes on the side drizzled with duck fat. Delicious. Of course, cassoulet gives another dimension of flavor in utilizing duck confit. Cassoulet itself entailed slow cooking process and anything cooked in fat is a savor. The whiff coming from your kitchen while cooking the cassoulet is really a delight with all the flavors mixed together that eventually enveloped your kitchen that carried out throughout your house and lingered through clothes!

  3. i love slow cooking as well. made your wagyu osso buco over the weekend and loved the falling off the bones tenderness. i should also ask where you got the confit though. Can’t wait to try this over the weekend.

  4. Hi Marketman!

    I hope you’ll feature callos next time. I especially like the version of Tita Monings!=) Thanks in advance!

  5. Cai, I inspected a lot of spectacular tripe (from the different stomachs of the cow to boot – there is a finer and a coarser tripe) in the Florentine markets and they looked clean and brilliant… but the tripe I see here in the markets looks far less appetizing…and I am not a big fan of it so doing a tripe recipe may be a bit of a stretch unfortunately… I did feature a pretty good tripe dish in my posts on Florence last year…

  6. “aroma cling” ha ha. I have been looking for a phrase to describe this problem and you just said it for me. Thanks.
    Actually, this is one of my pet peeves. I hate cooking “aroma cling”, so when we remodeled our kitchen, i put in a higher capacity exhaust vent.
    “aroma cling” problem minimized for us.

  7. Make duck confit, it’s really very easy, have 8 legs in the fridge right now You need major amounts of good duck or lamb broth so Cassoulet does not dry out. Look for “tarbais” white beans. Great Northern beans will work as well. This is our favorite New Year’s Day dinner.

  8. I’m sure this is a very satisfying dish, but all the while i thought cassoulet was made out of pork and beans plus other ingredients. . .

  9. i see how callos came up. looking at the pic up top, add tripe and change the white beans to garbanzos, voila!!! a callos recipe would be interesting indeed. our callos has some pork pata items thrown in. pata skin strips, shredded pata meat, and diced pata cartiledge. but tripe still takes the starring role.

    yup, the local tripes have the consistency and texture of an ongpin restaurant ‘goog morning’ face towel. but imported tripes are widely available in manila, where it is shipped in scalded, blanched, cleaned, odorfree, etc already.

  10. That looks so tasty , Marketman!I’m making this dish soon. I already ordered my tarbais beans. I’m also making duck confit next weekend and will save some for the cassoulet.

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