Bowl of Cassoulet

Jeremy's Cassoulet

Recipe by Jeremy Leffert

Wine Pairing: 2017 Tempranillo Maduro

2 1/2 T olive oil
2 slices bread torn/cut in crouton size pieces
2 bone-in chicken thighs
8 oz Spicy Italian Pork Sausage. Any ok really
1 onion, chopped fine
1/2 C canned diced tomatoes, drained (I use a whole can of diced tomatoes)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 T minced fresh Thyme
1 C chicken broth
1/2 C dry vermouth or dry white wine
1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans, rinsed
2 T fresh Italian parsley
3 slices bacon sliced into ¼ slices

Slice a loaf of sourdough into 1/3” slices. Dress with olive oil and salt. Bake in oven 350 for 25 minutes. This makes some nice, huge croutons.

In a large cast iron dutch oven, Heat a tbsp olive oil.

Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper.

Heat remaining 1 T olive oil in the now empty skillet over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Add 4 slices of bacon, and wait for it to brown and release the fat. Add chicken, skin side down, and sausage and cook, rotating sausage occasionally, but leave chicken undisturbed, until well browned (about 5 minutes). Transfer to plate. Do not cover.

Add remainder of bacon to pan and cook until almost brown, then add onion and tomatoes and 1/4 t salt to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally until softened and beginning to brown, about 15-25 minutes. Stir in garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth and vermouth, scraping up any brown bits. Add beans and stir to combine.

Add chicken, skin side up, bratwurst/sausage and any accumulated juices to bean mixture and bring to a boil over high heat. After it comes to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover it, and simmer until chicken registers 175 degrees, 10-15 minutes (I don’t bother checking the temperature of the chicken as you are going to cook it more, as described below, and I often leave it on the stove longer than the 15 minutes described in this step).

Uncover, increase heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until sauce is slightly thickened and falls just below the surface of the beans, about 10 minutes longer. Stew will be very loose but will continue to thicken as it sits. Off heat, top stew with reserved croutons and sprinkle with parsley. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

If I'm using the large croutons, I put the large croutons diagonally in a bowl so ½ of them are submerged. Then the top part can be eaten like crackers. Yum!

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