Cassoulet de Toulouse
For8 to 10 people
Total Timea day or more
Make Ahead RecipeYes
OccasionFormal Dinner Party
Recipe Coursemain course
Dietary Considerationmain course
Taste and Texturemeaty, rich, smoky
- 1½ pounds dried white beans, soaked overnight in water to cover and drained (700 g)
- ¾ pound salted spareribs or pork belly, soaked overnight in water to cover (300 g)
- ½ pound fresh pork rind, tied in a bundle and parboiled for 1 minute (250 g)
- 2 carrots, peeled
- 1 onion, stuck with a clove
- 2 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 bouquet garni
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tablespoon rendered goose fat
- About 1 pound boneless shoulder of lamb, cut into chunks (400 g)
- 2 onions, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, 2 of them chopped
- 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- Salt, freshly ground pepper
- 1 small bouquet garni
- 6- to 8-inch-long piece of Toulouse-type sausage (fresh pork sausage), cut into 6 to 8 pieces
- Lard (for frying)
- 6 to 8 thick slices garlic sausage
- 2 pieces, about 1 pound, preserved goose or duck (confit) (450 g)
- 1¾ cups dried breadcrumbs (160 g)
Put the beans into a large pot with the other bean ingredients and 2 quarts of water and cook until the beans are tender, 1½ to 2 hours.
Meanwhile, prepare the sauté. Heat the goose fat in a large frying pan, add the lamb, and brown the meat over a medium heat. Add the onions and the chopped garlic and brown them lightly, then spoon in enough liquid from the bean pot to barely cover the meat.
Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper, and a small bouquet garni. Cover and simmer slowly for 1½ hours. Brown the Toulouse sausage in a little lard and add it with the garlic sausage to the pan with the lamb and simmer for 10 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the bouquet garni, whole carrots, and onion from the bean pot and discard.
Remove the meat and pork rind from the bean pot and cut them into large chunks. Rub the inside of a large earthenware pot with the clove of garlic, and place half of the beans in the pot. Add all of the meat (including the lamb and the preserved goose) and cover with the remaining beans. Bring the cassoulet to a boil on top of the stove, then sprinkle the surface lightly with breadcrumbs.
Transfer the pot to the oven and bake for 1½ hours, breaking the crust that forms and stirring it in, then sprinkling lightly with more breadcrumbs every 15 minutes so that you will have broken and stirred in 5 to 7 crusts; leave the last crust to brown before serving.
1983 Robert Freson