Cassoulets are my ideal comfort food, hearty, rich and full of stewed goodness.
The dish originates in the old Languedoc region of France, a favourite among peasants who used inexpensive pork and mutton cuts along with white beans to create a simple, robust meal.
My version pays homage to its rural roots, but elevates it a bit with additional ingredients, though stays true to the essence of an inexpensive family meal.
If you'd prefer a meatless option substitute the sausages for mushrooms and chicken broth for a veggie broth.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 8 (+-26 1/2 oz) thick pork sausages
- 1 medium onion (thinly sliced)
- 2 small leek (trimmed, halved, washed, thinly sliced)
- 3 garlic cloves (crushed)
- 2 large carrots (quartered, chopped)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 can of can diced tomatoes
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 3 fresh thyme sprigs
- 1 can of white beans (drained, rinsed)
- 2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 370°F. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a casserole dish over a medium heat. Add the sausages. Cook, turning occasionally for 4 to 5 minutes or until browned. Transfer to a plate, rest them for a few minutes then cut each sausage into 1 inch chunks.
Step 2: Add the onion, leek and 2/3rd of the garlic and carrots to the casserole dish. Fry for 3 to 4 minutes, or until soft. Add the wine. Bring to the boil then add the tomato, stock, thyme, beans and sausage. Bring to the boil then transfer to oven for 20 minutes.
Step 3: Combine the breadcrumbs, remaining olive oil and garlic. Remove the dish from oven. Sprinkle with breadcrumb mixture. Return to oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until breadcrumbs are golden. Serve and garnish with the fresh parsley.