- 8 confit duck legs (see Note)
- 1.6 kg boneless pork shoulder, cut into 12 pieces
- 5 carrots, 4 halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
- 5 onions, 4 chopped
- 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
- 200 g piece pancetta (see Note) or streaky bacon, rind removed
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 garlic bulb, plus 3 cloves, finely chopped
- 6 thyme sprigs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ham hock (see Note)
- 400 g chopped roma tomatoes
- 1 litre chicken stock
- 600 g (3 cups) haricot beans (dried) (see Note), soaked overnight, drained
- 4 Toulouse-style pork and garlic sausages or plain pork sausages
- 105 g (1½ cups) fresh breadcrumbs
- 1 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Soaking time overnight
DRINK 2009 Château Beaumont Haut-Médoc, Bordeaux, France ($36)
Scrape 2 tbsp duck fat from confit duck legs and melt in a large, heavy-based casserole pan over medium heat. Season pork pieces with salt and pepper, then cook in batches, turning, for 5 minutes or until browned all over. Remove from casserole pan and set aside. Add sliced carrots, chopped onions and celery, and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until softened. Add pancetta and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until golden, then stir in tomato paste. Return pork to pan, along with garlic bulb, thyme, bay leaves, ham hock, tomatoes and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low and cook, covered, for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, place beans in a large saucepan with remaining carrot and onion. Add enough water to cover by 5 cm, then bring to the boil over medium heat and simmer for 45 minutes or until beans are almost tender. Drain, discarding carrot and onion. Add beans to casserole and cook, covered, for 1 hour.
Remove ham hock, pancetta and garlic bulb from casserole. When cool enough to handle, shred meat from hock, discarding bone. Slice pancetta, then return ham and pancetta to casserole. Squeeze garlic flesh from bulb, discarding skin, and stir into casserole with extra chopped garlic. Season with salt and continue to simmer over low heat.
Preheat oven to 160°C. Place sausages in an ovenproof frying pan over medium heat and cook, turning, for 10 minutes or until browned. Remove from pan and set aside. Place duck legs in same pan and transfer to oven for 30 minutes or until just warmed through. Transfer duck legs to a plate and set aside. Store leftover duck fat for another use.
Increase oven to 190°C. Arrange sausages on top of bean mixture in casserole. Combine breadcrumbs and parsley in a bowl, then scatter over sausages. Place cassoulet on the lowest rack of the oven and bake for 1 hour or until breadcrumbs are golden. Add reserved confit duck legs and cook for a further 10 minutes to warm through and slightly crisp skin. Serve duck confit cassoulet scattered with extra parsley.
• Confit roast duck legs are available from select butchers and specialist food shops.
• Pancetta is Italian pork belly that has been salt-cured and spiced. It is available from select supermarkets, greengrocers and delis.
• Ham hock is the lower leg joint of a pig. It is available from select butchers.
• Haricot beans are available from select greengrocers, delis and specialist food shops.
Photography by Olga Bennett.