A Hearty Twist of the French “Cassoulet”

By Simon  , ,   

January 9, 2015

This simple dish packs a punch, warming, fulfilling, hearty and totally full of French flavours. Don't forget a few sticks of French baguette to clean your bowl.....

  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 3 hrs
  • Yields: 4 Generous


2 Litre Cold water

1 Handful Sun-dried tomatoes

1 Small handful Dried sep mushrooms

100 Grams Smoky bacon thick cut

1-2 Small Bay leaf

1 Scattering Black pepper corns

2-3 Heaped tbsp Tomato puree

2-3 Large Carrots

10 Cloves Plump garlic cloves (optional)....how french are your tasty buds

200 Grams Haricot beans

12 Medium Toulouse sausages, pork, smoked bacon, red wine & garlic

2 Large Duck breasts

1/2 Large White onion

2 Cloves Plump garlic

1 Handful Freshly milled black pepper

1 Handful Flat leaf parsley


So simple to make and delicious to eat..... Imagine for a few moments, you are sitting at a little table covered with a chequered tablecloth, pavement style in a little French village, crisp cold air, the sounds of people connecting, laughter, a warming glass of vin rouge, a bowl appears, warm and steaming, your senses take in the aromas.  Enjoy the vision this delicious dish creates as you consume it.  It is so easy to make, all you need is a little time and the magic will happen.

To make the broth.

In a large saucepan over a moderate heat, add all the water, sun-dried tomatoes, puree, dried ceps, smokey bacon, bay and peppercorns, and leave it to gently blip away for 2 hours or so, strain the broth through a colander, discard the bits as they have all worked their magic.  Add the sliced carrots and harricot beans, gently simmer until tender. Check for your taste buds and adjust.

During the broth making, remove the skins from the sausages and blitz with the rough chopped duck breast,  sliced onion, crushed garlic & black pepper.  Shape into mini balls, about the size of a golf ball.

Roast the little morsels in a little olive oil until golden and cooked through, moderate oven 180c 30-45 mins or alternatively fry, set aside ready to plunge into the soup.

To serve, ladle generous amounts of the soup into warmed bowls, place in a couple of the meatballs, finishing with a scattering of freshly chopped parsley, warm crusty hunks of French bread... Voila, bon appetite.



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