Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Game sausage cassoulet

Regular readers will know that I  love cooking and am a collector of recipes. Not in a random, must have it way but with a degree of order. I give a long, hard look at the recipe and, however gorgeous it looks, there has to be a chance that I will cook it. We have a lovely neighbour who regularly turns up with pheasant and duck. Game is not an ingredient I'm used to, so I keep an eye out for suitable recipes. When our butcher made venison sausages I snaffled some up as I remembered a recipe in the file that would make good use of some of the duck in the freezer.

Although titled as a 'cassoulet' (loosely based on the fact it contains sausages and haricot beans) I would have preferred to call it something else but couldn't think of anything!

250g haricot beans
vegetable oil
500g game sausages (venison, pheasant or pigeon)
2 large duck breasts
2 small onions, chopped
3 bay leaves
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1tsp ground cloves
zest of one orange, grated
2 tbsps tomato paste
500ml chicken stock
150g cranberries
salt & pepper

Soak the beans overnight in cold water. Drain, cover with water, bring to the boil and then simmer for 30 minutes. Drain.

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the sausages until brown. Transfer to a plate and then fry the duck breasts. Skin side first for about 10 minutes until golden brown, then a couple of minutes on the other side. Remove the duck (retaining pan juice) and cut into 2cm slices.

Layer the ingredients in a casserole dish. Beans;sausages;duck;onions; bay leaves and pan juice.If you are using dried cranberries put these in now as well.
Mix the the garlic with the cloves, zest and tomato paste and stir into hot stock.  Add to the casserole and add a little water if necessary to make sure everything is covered.

Ready for the oven
Place in an oven, preheated to 160C/140C fan/GM3. Cook for about 2 hours (if using fresh or frozen cranberries add after 1 1/2 hours. Ready when the beans are soft. Season before serving.

I served it with a potato & celeriac mash but a crusty loaf would do. A great meal on a cold, wintry day.

Game sausage cassoulet
Oh! if anyone was concerned about me, the vegetarian, I had stuffed peppers.

Bean stuffed peppers


  1. Looks good. When I was the sole veggie in our family, I would cook meat dishes, but this looks a very meaty concoction indeed. And perhaps we could pop round for a portion after todays's planned hearty walk 'sous la pluie'

  2. You're all more than welcome - it made enough for a small army! It was quite meaty but fortunately I only had to slice cooked meat - I'm not so good if it's raw. Enjoy your walk - we've got more rain today :-( Our bad weather is being caused by a strong jetstream but does that effect where you are<