I used to cook a vegetarian version of this 30 Minute Meal but as Col is no longer veggie I now follow the recipe as it was intended. Except for the dessert. I’ve listed it in the ingredients and method but I didn’t make it as there are only two of us (it feeds four) and it seems like the kind of dessert that needs to be eaten straight away. To be honest, it’s the cassoulet and broccoli that I’m most interested in. The garlicky breadcrumbs that top the cassoulet feature in a lot of Jamie’s recipes and whenever I see them I just know the dish will be good.
I should say that the cassoulet works well as a vegetarian dish if you use good quality veggie sausages and leave out the bacon but having cooked both versions I’m wholeheartedly enjoying it with meat.
I don’t own a roasting tray that can be placed onto a direct heat source so I cooked the cassoulet in a large ovenproof frying pan.
- 4 rashers smoked streaky bacon
- 1 ½ large red onions
- few sprigs fresh rosemary
- ½ small bunch fresh sage
- 3 fresh bay leaves
- 2 leeks
- 400g chipolata sausages
- 3-4 thick slices of bread
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 680g jar of passata
- 1 can butter beans
- 1 can haricot beans
- 400g tenderstem broccoli
- ¼ red onion
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 ripe plum tomatoes
- 1 lemon
- olive oil
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 350g tin of gooseberries (or peaches or pears)
- 150g blueberries or blackberries (or any fresh berries)
- 3-4 tbs elderflower cordial
- tin of custard (around 425g)
- 150g Greek yoghurt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or paste
- a few shortbread biscuits
- You will need a food processor, a roasting tray that can be placed on a hob and two small saucepans.
- Turn your grill as high as it will go, fill and boil your kettle and put the roasting tray over a high heat.
- Cassoulet: Slice 4 rashers of bacon into 1cm strips and add to the roasting tray along with a drizzle of olive oil. Halve, peel and slice 1½ red onions (you’ll use the remaining half later). Pick the leaves off the rosemary and sage, reserving a few sage leaves for later and add to the roasting tray along with the bay leaves. Trim the leeks, discard the outer leaves and slice down them lengthways. Give the leeks a really good wash then finely slice and add them to the roasting tray along with the sliced red onion. Pour in a few splashes of boiling water from the kettle and leave the vegetables to soften. Cook the sausages under the grill for 8 minutes (no need to turn them) and make sure to stir the vegetables in the roasting tray occasionally.
- Broccoli: Trim the broccoli and discard the ends.
- Berry dessert: Put an empty saucepan over a high heat then pour in the juice from the tinned fruit and bring to a boil.
- Cassoulet: Tear the bread into chunks and add to the food processor with a pinch of salt and pepper, half of the reserved sage leaves, 2 cloves of garlic and a drizzle of olive oil. Process until you have coarse crumbs. Stir the passata and beans (including their water) into the tray of vegetables.
- Berry dessert: Add the gooseberries and fresh berries to the saucepan and stir occasionally.
- Broccoli: Coarsely grate the majority of the onion half (left over from earlier) into a mixing bowl and crush over a clove of garlic. Halve the plum tomatoes, discard the seeds then grate them, flesh side down, through the coarse grater. Discard the leftover skins. Drizzle in some extra virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper, squeeze in the juice of a lemon, then mix.
- Cassoulet: Scatter half the breadcrumbs onto the tray of veg and beans. Remove the sausages from the grill and place them dark side down in the tray then sprinkle over the remaining breadcrumbs. Coat the last of the sage leaves in olive oil then scatter them over the breadcrumbs and put the roasting tray back under the grill (on the middle shelf so the breadcrumbs don’t burn) for around 4 minutes or until the breadcrumbs are golden and crispy.
- Broccoli: Place another saucepan over a high heat and fill with boiled water from the kettle. Put the broccoli into the saucepan, stalks down, clamp a lid on and cook for around 2 minutes or until tender.
- Berry dessert: The fruit should have a jammy consistency by now so turn off the heat and stir in 3-4 tablespoons of elderflower cordial. Spoon the custard around a platter then pour the fruit and its syrup into the centre. Spoon the Greek yoghurt over the fruit then drizzle a teaspoon of vanilla paste over the yoghurt and fold it through. Take to the table along with a few shortbread biscuits.
- Broccoli: Drain the broccoli, scatter it on a platter and spoon over the tomato dressing. Give it a toss then take it to the table.
- Cassoulet: Remove the cassoulet from the oven and take it to the table. Serve with a bottle of red wine.