This delicious duck dish is fancy enough to impress your friends while equally simple enough to serve up as a family supper. Made with classic French ingredients like Toulouse sausages, garlic, cannellini beans and fresh thyme, this dish is packed full of delicious flavours. The crusty bread topping would work well on any stew recipe as it soaks up the rich gravy whilst adding a satisfyingly crunchy texture to the dish.
- 4 duck legs, each cut into 2 portions
- 500g boned pork shoulder, in large cubes
- 4 Toulouse sausages, twisted and cut to make 4 small sausages
- 100g smoked lardons
- 2 red onions, peeled and cut into thick wedges
- 1 garlic bulb, halved across
- 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
- 600ml hot chicken stock
- 1 red chilli, scored down one side
- A few sprigs of thyme
- 1tsp sherry vinegar
- 2 x 400g cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 large baguette
Set the oven to 160°C/320°F/Gas Mark 3. Put a deep roasting tin in the oven to heat up or preheat a slow-cook pot.
Heat a large frying pan, add the seasoned duck portions, skin-side down, and leave them to brown, then turn them over to seal the meat. Put in the hot tin or pot, drain off all but 1tbsp of fat.
Add the pork to the pan and let it brown all over. Spoon into the tin or pot. Add the sausages, lardons, onion wedges and garlic halves, cut-side down, to the pan and brown them all over.
Tip this mixture into the tin or pot. Add the tomatoes and stock to the pan, along with the chilli, thyme and sherry vinegar. Bring to the boil. Add the beans and pour it all into the tin or pot; stir to mix. Cover the tin with foil, shiny side down, and cook for 1½ hours. Cook in the pot on Auto for 4-5 hours.
Take the tin out of the oven. Discard the garlic and chilli, if you like. Tear chunks off the baguette and throw them on top. Put the cassoulet in the oven and turn up the heat to 180°C/356°F/Gas Mark 4 to cook, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes to crisp bread. Tip the cassoulet cooked in the slow-cook pot into a roasting tin and finish off in the oven, as above.
You can leave out the pork andadd 8 sausages if you prefer.