Cooking an authentic cassoulet can take days, if not weeks, if you’re planning to make a confit of the poultry legs. The storied French dish, brimming with white beans, chicken or duck legs, and sausage that is oven-simmered for hours until the meats melt to tenderness is a great cooking project for a winter weekend. But it’s less tempting to pull together a true cassoulet in the heat of summer.
And yet, you can only grill dinner so often. Change up your routine with a riff on cassoulet that pulls intense flavor from spicy sausage and savory green chili. Look for artisan sausage studded with chilies and Southwest spices to add layers of instant flavor. In a way, this becomes a riff on another perennial favorite, ham and beans.
However you decide to frame this recipe, there’s always a spot for spicy sausage and white beans on the menu.
Hatch Green Chili Sausage “Cassoulet” Recipe
- 3 T olive oil, more if necessary
- 1 1/4 pounds Hatch Green Chili Chicken sausage links, about 3, skin pricked with fork
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 (15 oz) cans Great Northern or cannelini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (15 oz) jar good quality green chili (Durango Diner or Nanita’s Finest are a couple of favorites)
- 1 (14.5 oz) can tomato sauce
- 8 mini sweet peppers, mixed colors, halved, seeded, and sliced into 1/4″ lengths
Make the recipe:
Heat oven to 350°F.
Warm olive oil in 3 quart saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add sausage to pan and brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Remove sausage to paper towel lined plate to absorb fat.
Add more olive oil if pan is dry. Sauté onions and garlic for about 8-10 minutes, or until onions are soft and golden in color. Toss in sweet peppers and continue to cook for another 3-4 minutes, until peppers are beginning to brown on the edges.
Pour green chili and tomato sauce into pan and stir to incorporate onion mixture. Add beans, stirring gently. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes until sauce is bubbly and beginning to thicken.
Slice sausage into two inch segments and nestle into beans.
Place saucepan into oven uncovered and bake until sauce thickens, about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from oven and serve immediately.
For extra comfort food quality, you can top the “cassoulet” with a fried egg, if you like!
Serves 4 generously.