I’m in. Deep in, my friends. Deep into my cannelloni bean phase, that is! Oh yes, it’s on!
Cassoulet is a rich, slow-cooked bean stew or casserole originating in the south of France.
Other than the beans and slow-cooking method, there’s nothing traditional about this cassoulet. It’s vegetarian, after all!
What are you doing this weekend, anyway? Cooking the beans?
You could do that today, and spend a part of Saturday or Sunday hanging out in the kitchen — making this insanely flavorful, heart-warming (yes, heart-warming) meal!
- ¾ cup olive oil
- 2-1/2 cups thinly sliced brown onion
- 2 tablespoons roasted garlic
- 2-1/2 cups carrots, peeled and cut into ¼ to ½-inch rounds
- 5 cups packed, roughly chopped kale, washed and dried (I like black kale in this recipe.)
- 1-1/4 cup roughly chopped, oil marinated artichoke hearts
- 1-1/2 tablespoons finely chopped, fresh oregano
- 2-1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1-1/4 cup roughly chopped, peeled canned tomatoes
- 1-1/4 cup dry white wine
- 2-1/2 cups vegetable stock
- 3-3/4 cups cooked cannellini beans
- 2 cups bread crumbs
- ½ cup melted, unsalted butter
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
- Use about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to coat the bottom of a large pot. Place the pot over medium-high heat and add the onions. Stirring every few minutes or so, cook the onions until they are very tender and are beginning to become brown, about 15 minutes. Add the roasted garlic and stir to blend.
- Add the carrots and cook until they begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Then add the kale and cook until it’s completely wilted, again, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the artichokes, oregano and thyme, and cook for a few minutes, until it’s very aromatic.
- Deglaze the pot with the tomatoes, wine and stock. Use a flat-bottomed wooden spatula to scrape any stuck bits of food from the bottom of the pot, back into the mixture.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Then uncover the pot, turn the heat to medium and cook to reduce the liquid by about half. This should take about 20 minutes.
- Fold in the cooked cannellini beans and season generously with salt and pepper.
- Pour the mixture into a baking dish (approximately 9 X 13 X 2-1/2-inch baking dish — something like Emile Henry stoneware is perfect.)
- Sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly on top and then drizzle it with the melted butter and the remaining olive oil.
- Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 1-1/2 hours. Then cover loosely with foil, and bake for another 30 minutes.
- Let it “rest” for at least 20 minutes before serving.
Gluten-free? Easy — use gluten-free bread crumbs! I make mine with the ends of our gluten-free bread. (Toast in the oven, let it cool, then use a food processor to blend.)
This cassoulet is lovely served in individual baking dishes, as well. (A 4 x 6 x 2-inch would serve 1 to 2 — and for this recipe use 5 of them).
Up to 4 days and at least 1 day ahead: Cook the beans.
Up to 1 week and at least 1 day ahead: Roast the garlic.
3-1/2 hours ahead: Begin prepping and cooking the ingredients for the cassoulet.
2-1/2 hours ahead: Bake the cassoulet!
This entire dish can be made 1 day ahead. (Once it comes to room temperature, cover it tightly and keep it refrigerated. To get ready to serve, bring it back to room temperature, and then reheat it in a 300 degree F oven until it’s hot all the way through, about 20 minutes.)