Pretty easy, using up those Sunday BBQ leftovers, cassoulet.

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Today I realised I have not made cassoulet for quite some time. Sure, I’ve made pit beans and I’ve made cowboy beans, but I haven’t made a classic French cassoulet. And today I shan’t be making cassoulet either. Instead I shall be doing that bastardising thing I love to do so much and use a little smoked meat I have left over from the weekends cook to create my own little smoky assed, junk yard dog, mongrel cassoulet. And just like that junk yard dog, this dish is literally begging for you to give it more meat… give it all of the meat.

If I may digress just a little…

The cassoulet is basically a brothel. It has a big illuminated sign above it’s front door inviting more meat to the party. It does not care of the origin of the meat. It’s a “the more meat the better” type situation for the cassoulet… much like the brothel.

But as I said earlier, this is a mongrel version of said cassoulet so don’t go reporting me to the Traditional Cookery Police (TCP) because as we all know; dobbers wear nappies.

If you would like to make a bang up, bona fide, old school, full of fat and confit duck, Frenchy cassoulet, you can find a recipe by a great chef by the name of Guillaume Brahimi, right here.

I have also used tinned cannellini beans to keep it quick and easy. Tinned legumes defo have a place in my cupboard.

Cut the top off the garlic so it looks like this

Saute the meat and vegetables

The mongrel cassoulet sharing the table with some more beans. It’s a pretty friendly sort, really


PRETTY EASY MONGREL CASSOULET

500-750g smoky meaty leftovers (depending on how much you consumed or may have left over from that BBQ comp on the week end ) – start with pork neck or ribs and then add sausage, brisket, lamb and/or chicken – all chopped
2 tablespoons drippings from that meaty goodness
1 small onion (or half a large onion as I have used), diced
1 carrot, diced
1 stick celery, diced
1 tomato, diced
1 bulb garlic, left whole, top sliced off to reveal a little garlic-y flesh
A few sprigs of parsley and thyme
1 bay leaf
2x 400g tins cannellini beans, strained
500ml chicken stock. Homemade is best but sometimes store bought might be all you have on hand and it will still work, I can guarantee that
1 cup breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 200C.
Lube up a casserole dish or cast-iron pot or something that you can put in the oven with the drippings and then sauté meat and vegetables over medium heat until vegetables are starting to soften and brown a little. Alternatively, you can sauté the meat and vegetables in a pan and then transfer them to an oven proof dish.
Add all other ingredients except bread crumbs, stir to combine and season.
Top with bread crumbs and place in oven, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until golden brown and smelling delicious.
Eat it.
Put it in your face with a little green salad, or maybe some green beans with onion vinaigrette if you want to be the same as us.

One last pic of the ingredients…

What’s Liz Having For Dinner Tonight

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This one’s for Liz and her flood party challenge. See: it’s gonna flood.

She’s got tinned potatoes (just a little side note here… tinned potatoes? That’s farkin’ awesome), tinned tomatoes, tinned beans, spam, lettuce, pumpkin, parsley and quinoa. Ahh quinoa (pronounced kinwah), another one
of my personal fav’s.

I’m going out on limb here since I don’t have any actual knowledge about cooking spam, but I am going to pretend
that I know heaps about it and, say with conviction, that tonight Liz will be cooking a bumper meal of… spam and
tomato “cassoulet” with a quinoa crust, crushed potatoes and parsley and a simple leaf salad.

Yeah kid.

OK. First the cassoulet. If you want to see a prime example of a cassoulet in all it’s glory, suss out the version
Guillaume Brahimi does on sbsfood.com.au.

But, if you wanna make a flooded-in-and-have-to-use-the-stuff-in-my-cupboard-and-i’m-not-even-sure-what-spam-
is-doing-there cassoulet, then this is the recipe for you.

Pre-heat oven to 180C.
In an oven proof pan fry off one diced onion and 2 cloves of chopped garlic.
Add yer spam, chopped into bite sized chunks. Fry for a minute or two and hopefully it will start to brown up.
Add a couple of tins of cannellini beans, a tin of tomatoes, a bouquet garni (back a few posts), seasoning and a splash of water or stock to moisten it up.
Cover the top with a layer of cooked quinoa (suss out how to cook it a couple of posts back), just like you were putting breadcrumbs on yer mac and cheese.
Brush or douse with a little olive oil or butter and into the oven for 30 minutes, or until brown and crusty.

For the crushed potatoes I am assuming that potatoes in a can are already cooked, so maybe just put them in a microwave safe bowl and crush them a little with a masher or your hands. Heat them in the microwave for 2-3 minutes and then mix in some butter (don’t by shy now), a handful of chopped parsley and some salt and pepper. Heat the potatoes when your “cassoulet” is almost ready so they are still hot when you eat.

And the leaf salad. Whatever leaves you have, a handful of picked parsley and a sharp vinaigrette of 1 part lemon juice or vinegar, 3 parts olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Dress this puppy at the table when you’re ready to eat so the leaves don’t get soggy.

Let me know how you go…