I think the Dog gave me this idea. I don’t have any cannellini beans in the pantry. I’ve got 2 kinds of hominy and chickpeas. In addition, normally I would have used duck legs instead of duck breasts for the cassoulet, preferring to reserve the duck breasts for searing and eating rare. However, I have so many duck breasts! And these weren’t Jean Louis’ anyway but of an inferior but okay supermarket quality.
This cassoulet turned out well, even with the chickpeas. In fact, in was fabulous I had a bonus of Toulouse sausages in the freezer and seared the fat from 3 duck breasts, using two in the cassoulet and reserving one for sandwiches or a salad later. I browned the sausages in some of the reserved duck fat and also used some to saute the onions, garlic and carrots.
All of my stove top casseroles and tajines are in France, so I used my large “back in the day”, Farberware skillet with cover to simmer the cassoulet.
Magret de Canard and Toulouse Sausage Cassoulet
2 duck breasts, fat scored
6 Toulouse sausages
2 onions, halved and sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
3 carrots, halved and sliced
1 large and 1 regular cans whole or diced tomatoes
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cans of chickpeas or cannellini beans.
In a hot skillet, on a medium low flame, brown and render the fat from the duck breasts. Cut the duck breasts into large cubes, then set aside. Remove the rendered fat from the skillet and reserve.
Add a tablespoon of the rendered fat and the sausages to the skillet and brown. Remove and reserve. Add another tablespoon of the fat to the skillet and saute the onions, garlic and carrots until the onion is soft.
Add the tomatoes (breaking up with a fork if whole), salt, pepper, bay leaf, oregano and thyme to the skillet. Simmer for a few minutes, then add the chickpeas, cubes of duck, then top with the sausages, cover and simmer for an hour.