Cassoulet is a traditional country French dish; a rustic stew generally made with whatever one has on hand...usually a combination of sausage and poultry and miscellaneous garden vegetables. I found this recipe on Erica's blog; it comes from her step-mother and is truly a classic dish. My family loves it; I hope you enjoy it too!
1 1/2 lbs Great Northern white beans (dry)
6 medium onions
4 whole cloves
2 boxes Pacific chicken broth (gluten free!)
2 bay leaves, crumbled
1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery leaves
1 1/2 t. salt
3 whole black peppercorns
3 cloves garlic, crushed
4 lbs roasting chicken cut into 8 pieces (I use chicken thighs and breasts)
2 T. butter (use olive oil or coconut oil instead for casein free)
1/8 t. pepper
1 can (1 lb) peeled tomatoes, undrained
1 lb Polish sausage (whole)
2 T. chopped parsley
1 t. dried thyme leaves
1 t. dried marjoram leaves
1 t. dried sage leaves
1/4 lb bacon
In an 8 qt. kettle with cover, combine beans with 4 1/2 cups cold water, let soak 2 hours, no longer. Do not drain beans.
Meanwhile, pare carrots and cut into quarters. Peel onions, stud 1 of the onions with whole cloves. To beans, add chicken broth, bay leaves, 1/4 of the carrots, the onions, onion studded with cloves, celery leaves, 1 tsp. salt, the black peppercorns, garlic, thyme, marjoram and sage. Bring just to boiling, reduce heat and simmer, covered, 1 hour.
Add remaining carrots: cook, covered, 15 minutes longer. Meanwhile, cut bacon into pieces. in a large skillet, saute bacon until browned, drain off fat.
Preheat oven to 350. Turn bean mixture into a 8 quart casserole. Add bacon. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in hot butter in large skillet, brown chicken, turning until evenly browned. Sprinkle evenly with 1/2 t. salt and 1/8 t. pepper. Add browned chicken and undrained tomatoes to beans. With a a sharp knife, cut 9 diagonal slashes, 1/8 inch deep, in top of the sausage. Place sausage on top of chicken and vegetables. Cover tightly, bake 45 minutes or until chicken is tender. Uncover and bake 10 minutes more, sprinkle with parsley and serve.