Braised Pork and Duck Confit with White Beans

, from Issue #19. September, 2015
Photography by Damien Van der Vlist.
Braised Pork and Duck Confit with White Beans

Loosely based on the famous French dish cassoulet, which can take up to two days to prepare, this recipe using cooked, tinned white beans is a much simpler but still delicious version.

Serves: 6


2 tablespoons olive oil or duck fat from the confit
1 kilogram boneless free-range pork shoulder, cut into large pieces
4 large, coarse textured, pork and fennel sausages
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
2 sticks celery, sliced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 x 400 gram tin Italian tomatoes
3 cups good chicken stock
1 bouquet garni
2 confit duck legs
2 x 400 gram tins cooked white beans

Crumb topping
2 tablespoons olive oil
knob of butter
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1½ cups fresh sourdough breadcrumbs
½ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley


Preheat the oven to 175°C.

Heat the oil in a large, cast-iron casserole dish. Add the pork and sausages and brown on all sides until golden. Do this in batches. Transfer to a plate. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the pot and sauté until tender. Add the tomatoes, stock, bouquet garni, the pork and any juices. The sausages are added later. Bring to the boil, season, cover and cook for 1½ hours. Cut the sausages in half on the diagonal. Place the jar or tin of duck confit in a pan of hot water to melt the fat. Carefully take out the legs and cut into two pieces. Store the fat in the freezer and use it for cooking potatoes. Add the duck to the casserole along with the sausages and beans, pushing them down into the sauce. Cook, uncovered for a further 45 minutes.

Crumbs: Heat the oil and butter in a sauté pan and stir fry the garlic, breadcrumbs and parsley until crisp and golden.

To serve: Scatter the crumbs over the casserole and serve with crusty bread. 

Cook's Tip: Tins of confit duck legs are available at good food stores. Four chicken drumsticks can be used in place of the confit duck legs. Brown them at the beginning with the other meats and add with the pork to the casserole.