We live in a neighborhood of great cooks, but Jonathan Goldman is by far the most ambitious. His cassoulet is a classic take on this great dish, and it’s an ideal one-pot supper for family and friends that’s also perfectly portable for a potluck.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound dried flageolet beans
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ pound slab bacon, diced
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 3 celery stalks, medium-diced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 4 to 5 cups chicken or veal broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed with the side of a chef’s knife
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 4 bay leaves, fresh if possible
  • 2 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 to 8 pork sausages
  • 6 confit duck legs
  • 2 cups fresh sourdough bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Method

2 Days Ahead

Place the beans in a soup pot and add water to cover by several inches. Use a pot that’s larger than you think you’ll need, as the soaked beans will double in size.

1 Day Ahead

Heat a 2-count of oil in a Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat until the bacon fat is rendered. Add the carrots, celery, and onions and cook on high heat for 7 to 10 minutes, until slightly soft. Add the wine and cook for a minute or two, stirring up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Drain the beans and add them to the pan along with the broth. Stir in the tomato paste and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and simmer the cassoulet for 1½ hours. Then add the garlic, herbs, and salt and pepper and simmer for another 30 minutes. Cool the mixture to room temperature, discard the herb stems, and refrigerate, covered, overnight.

The Day of

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lift off and discard the hardened fat from the pot of beans and bring to a simmer over medium heat. While the beans rewarm, brown the sausages in a skillet over high heat for 6 to 8 minutes. Cut the sausages into 2-inch pieces and add to the pot along with the duck confit, nestling them down into the beans. Toss the bread crumbs with the butter and salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle over the beans. Top with the chopped parsley. Bake uncovered for 1½ to 2 hours, or until a nice brown crust forms.

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