Chicken Cassoulet

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Chicken and sausage meats in a tomatoey rich beany sauce, topped off with breadcrumbs.

This has all the warmth and flavour of a traditional Cassoulet (e.g. Cassoulet Toulouse), but without the greasiness of duck or the heaviness of red meat. It’s Cassoulet, therefore it’s French.

4 generous serving portions.

Ingredients

1
medium to large onion
4
fat cloves garlic
20 ml
FAIRTRADE olive oil
3
good sausages (lamb and mint work well)
3
chicken breasts
salt and pepper
400 g tin
FAIRTRADE white kidney beans
400 g
tin of chopped tomatoes
lots
wholemeal breadcrumbs
FAIRTRADE
Sources

Method

Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 5 (190 °C; 375 °F).

Prepare the onions and garlic in the usual way and put sliced onion and crushed garlic into a Le Creuset casserole pan. Add some oil and fry gently while you prepare the meats.

Cut the sausages into 1 inch portions and lay in the pan in a circle round the outside.

Cube the chicken breasts and layer them inside the sausage pieces.

Allow the ingredients to “sweat” for about 5 to 10 minutes, and then gently turn over the chicken and the sausage meat, and allow to fry gently for another 5 minutes. The meats should be pretty much “sealed” before going on to the next step.

Season well with salt and pepper.

Open the can of beans and rinse well, add to the casserole and smooth down without disturbing the meats. Add the chopped tomatoes and push them down amongst the beans and meat using the back of a serving spoon.

Allow the casserole to come up to a gentle simmer.

Sprinkle breadcrumbs over the dish to form a layer, and add a drizzle of olive oil. Bake, uncovered for 30 minutes.

Add another layer of breadcrumbs and oil and bake for another 30 minutes.

To serve:

Serve hot with carrots and a green vegetable.

Variations:

Put some chopped fresh herbs in the tomatoes for an extra flavour.

Note:

This dish is not stirred at all after the meats are turned.

Quantities are not crucial.

The dish will happily sit in the oven for a long period (2 to 3 hours), at a lower cooking temperature, if that fits with your timetable, but try to end with a crispy crust before serving.