CASSOULET - Daring Cooks Challenge - Jan/2011

Leia em Português

Our January 2011 Challenge comes from Jenni of The Gingered Whisk and Lisa from Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives. They have challenged the Daring Cooks to learn how to make a confit and use it within the traditional French dish of Cassoulet. They have chosen a traditional recipe from Anthony Bourdain and Michael Ruhlman.

This month, the Daring cooks (I guess most of them live in the Northern Hemisphere) had to make Cassoulet. It is a hot dish very appropriate for the chilly winter. But, I was in Brazil and it is summer there. Temperatures that reached 40°C definitely did not help to make this dish appealing. I was hoping for cooler days but they didn't come. So, I decided to make the challenge as soon as I arrived in Korea, as this was going to happen before the posting day. I bought white beans in Brazil because I had never seen them here. But, guess what! When packing I forgot to include the beans in my luggage! Well, I thought, I will have to sit this one out. But deep in my heart, I really wanted to make it, specially because I arrived in Seoul at -11°C, perfect for the hearty winter stew. Thanks to Lisa and Jenni, who included a quick version of the recipe and many different types of confit to choose from, I could make it, despite being jet-lagged from the 36 hour trip and the 12 hours time difference. It's not the authentic, but a delicious substitution. Anyway, I'll get back to the original recipe one day. 


Serves: 4-6


1 tablespoon olive oil (I used some of the olive oil from the garlic confit)
500 g rolled shoulder ham (also called a daisy ham or Boston Butt), tough outer skin removed
350 g Andoille sausage
500g Polish sausages 
1 cup whole button mushrooms 
1 onion
4 large cloves of garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
500g chickpeas soaked overnight
1 large tomato
1/2 cup water (some more if necessary)
1/4 teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh parsley

For Serving:
Tabasco sauce
Dijon-style mustard


Soak the chickpeas overnight in a large bowl of water.

Rinse the chickpeas and transfer to a pressure cooker. Cover with water (about 1 inch above chickpea level). Cook for 40 minutes (count time only under pressure).

 Heat the oil in a large skillet and add the ham, Polish sausage, and Adouille sausage, cut into bite sized pieces.

Cover and cook over high heat for 7 to 8 minutes, turning occasionally.

Add the mushrooms, onion, garlic, thyme, and bay leaf. Mix well and cook for another 5 to 6 minutes.

 Add the chickpeas, tomato, water, and pepper, bring back to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and boil gently for 5 minutes.

At serving time, discard the bay leaf, sprinkle the parsley on top. Serve with white rice, garlic confit, Tabasco and mustard.



1½ cup (360 ml) Olive Oil
1½ tsp (7½ ml) (4 gm) kosher salt (**Note: if using table salt, use ½ the amount)
10 whole black peppercorns
5 sprigs fresh thyme
65 garlic cloves, peeled (about 1 ½ cups/360 ml)
1 dried bay leaf


Preheat oven to slow 300°F/150°C/gas mark.

Put ingredients in a 1 quart (950 ml) pot, making sure all the garlic is submerged in the oil. Cover pot. 

Bake until garlic is golden brown and tender, about 1 hour. Let cool.

Transfer mixture to a glass jar; cover surface of oil with plastic wrap. Cover jar and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. 

Makes 2 cups/480 ml.


The original recipes, as well as the tempting Cassoulets and Confits created by the other Daring Cooks can be found at THE DARING KITCHEN.


  1. I just love that heart shaped dish you confited the garlic in. And well done on doing the challenge even with jet lag. Even with all the substitutions it still looks wonderful and I bet it was delicious. Superb work.

    Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  2. Renata, so happy you took part in our challenge, and especially considering the heat in Brazil. Glad you were able to make it in a cooler Korea, though :) It looks phenomenal, and served with rice is a brilliant idea, a richer and more extravagant take on rice and beans :) Your garlic confit looks amazing in that little heart dish!

  3. That garlic confit looks mouthwatering! I love garlic to begin with, and Ijust want to reach through the screen and pop a clove into my mouth! I am so glad you were able to get a version of this challenge in "on time," and I am sorry that your beans got stuck in Brazil! Ihope they are enjoying the warm weather! Great work!!

  4. You made awesome challenge. Love the rich food perfect for weather.

  5. This looks so wonderful, you did a great job:)

  6. The garlic confit looks delicious and so does your cassoulet, excellent job on this challenge!

  7. You flew halfway across the world to make cassoulet?! You rock! Haha! That is dedication, girl! :) Your heart dish for the garlic confit is so cute!! Wonderful job!

  8. Renata, that garlic confit looks beautiful! I can almost smell it from here! It's great that you were able to travel to colder Korea to enjoy the full benefits of the cassoulet & I like the idea of using chickpeas. It looks delicious!

  9. A fabulous-looking cassoulet, Renata! I bet the texture with the chickpeas was wonderful. And that garlic--yum! I was wondering if you would make a feijoada (?), as I think of it as a Brazilian-style cassoulet. Hope you are all settled back in now, and that your jet lag is long gone.

  10. Love your cassoulet, I bet chickpeas were fantastic in it! What a fantastic job and your story makes it even more memorable. :)


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