CLASSIC CASSOULET
This recipe is complicated but worth the trouble in the end. I've adapted this from the original in the Time-Life "Cooking of Provincial France" book. I think there are probably thousands of different recipes for Cassoulet throughoout France, not to mention those in other countries. Plan ahead for this and take yur time. It's worth the effort.
Sreves 8

1 pound dried Navy Beans -- washed and sorted
Reserved Cooking Liquid
6 sprigs fresh Parsley
2 cloves Garlic -- peeled
1 Bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon dried Thyme leaves
1/2 pound lean Salt Pork -- diced
3 medium Onions -- 1 sliced, 2 chopped
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 pound boneless Lamb Shoulder -- cut in 1-1/2" pieces
1 pound Lamb Soupbones
2 cloves Garlic -- minced
3 tablespoons Tomato Paste
1/4 teaspoon ground Thyme
1 cup Dry Vermouth
2 cups Beef Broth
1 tablespoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground Black Pepper
1 pound boneless Pork Shoulder
1/2 pound Kielbasa
1 cup fresh Bread Crumbs
1/4 cup chopped fresh Parsley

Place beans in a Dutch oven; cover with water by 1 inch. Cover and soak overnight. Drain beans and pour soaking liquid into a 4-cup measuring cup. Add enough water to liquid to equal 4 cups; add to the beans. Prepare a bouquet garni using parsley, garlic, bay leaf and thyme; add to the pot.

In a skillet, cook salt pork until lightly brown; remove pork with a slotted spoon and discasrd, reserving drippings.

Add sliced onion, soaking liquid and bouquet garni to the beans and bring to a boil; lower heat; cover and simmer 1 hour. Drain beans and discard liquid.

Saute lamb in pork drippings until browwed; remove to a plate. Brown lamb bones in remaining pork drippings and remove bones. Saute chopped onion in drippings until tender. Return lamb meat and bones to the pan; add garlic, tomato paste, thyme, vermouth, salt and pepper. Mix well and bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer covered 1-1/2 hours. Remove lamb meat to a plate; remove and discard lamb bones and reserve the broth.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Roast the whole pork shoulder in a shallow roasting pan 1 hour; reserve pan juices. Remove pork and cut into 2-inch pieces.

Arrange a layer of beans on the bottom of a lightly greased 8-quart casserole, then a layer of lamb, a layer of pork, and a layer of sausage. Repeat two more times, ending with beans. Pour the lamb broth over the beans to within 1 inch of the top layer.

Increase oven heat to 350 degrees. Sprinkle top of the casserole with combined breadcrumbs and parsley. Sprinkle the reserved pork pan juices over all. Bake uncovered 1 hour or until a crust forms on top.


Copyright 2008 Carol Stevens, Shaboom's Kitchen, All Rights Reserved