This great Cheat's recipe has all the elements of a traditional French Cassoulet - assorted meats, beans, carrots, tomatoes, wine & tomatoes - but is very easy & does not include Confit d'Canard if you find that difficult to obtain. However, you need to get hold of high meat content sausages to give it a more authentic taste. I have given a few variations at the bottom of the recipe; this recipe works extremely well in a Crock pot as well as the more traditional Le Creuset casserole dishes. French comfort food at it's best! Serve with mashed potatoes & crisp Savoy Cabbage. This recipe can be easily doubled for bigger or hungry crowds of diners! NOTE on BEANS: I use tinned/canned beans or pre-soaked and cooked beans in this recipe; for uncooked beans, you will need to soak them overnight and then boil them; then increase the cooking time by about 15 minutes. This was posted as a "Cheat's" recipe, meaning cutting a few corners if you don't have time - i.e. use tinned beans!! P.S. I have a sausage recipe posted: Old Fashioned English Spiced Pork and Herb Sausages or Bangers! that would work well with this recipe.
- 50 g lardons or 50 g bacon, chopped into small dice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 450 g meaty sausages
- 4 lean pork chops, cut into large pieces
- 400 g tinned beans
- cannellini or navy beans or mixed beans or haricot beans or butter beans
- 1 onion, peeled & diced
- 4 carrots, peeled & diced into biggish chunks
- 400 g chopped tomatoes
- 400 ml chicken stock
- 200 ml red wine
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 garlic cloves (or more)
- 50 g breadcrumbs
- 1 bouquet garni
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet - fry the bacon until nearly crisp & then add the onions, garlic, & carrots. Cook over a high heat until they are just soft on the outside & turning a golden colour. Drain well & remove from pan. Add to crock pot or Le Creuset casserole dish.
- Add sausages and brown - remove & add to onion mixture.
- Add pork chop pieces & brown - remove and add to above mixture.
- Make up chicken stock and add wine. Mix tomatoes in with stock & teaspoon of sugar.
- Pour stock and tomatoes over the cassoulet in crock pot or le creuset - add bouquet garni & give everything a good stir!
- Add the beans and stir well again.
- Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top and cook for up to 6 hours on high in crock pot or in le cresuet for 3 hours in a slow oven with the lid on, 150C/300°F.
- Half an hour before serving, take lid of le creuset to brown the top. It's difficult to brown in a crock pot, but it's not that essential to brown the top, as the reason behind the breadcrumbs is to soak up some of the juice & make a crust on top! If your crock pot is the type which you can put under the grill, then do so!
- Serve with mountains of fluffy mashed potatoes & stir-fried Savoy Cabbage.
- NOTE ON SAUSAGES:.
- Try to use very good quality high meat content sausages; in France Toulouse sausages are mainly used - they generally have a meat content of at least 85%. Good quality English style sausages are also good - I have a recipe posted for some English sausages: Recipe #190045.
- However, any kind of sausage can be used and in the past I have used: Choritzo, Italian Style, Chipolatas etc.
- The Pork chops can be replaced with chicken pieces, lamb steaks or Confit D'Canard - preserved duck, if you are lucky enought to have some!