The first time I had cassoulet in its home turf it was a revelation. This loose, almost soup-like stew of beans and meat was so far removed from all versions of cassoulet I'd had in the United States, or even in other parts of France. It was a large, bubbling vat of beans and meat, covered in a crust so dark that it was almost black. Rich, meaty, and overwhelmingly simple, the main flavor was just that of the cured meat, a good stock, and beans.
Cassoulet of White Beans with Braised Pork, Sausage, and Duck Confit - Recipe - FineCooking
Making this legendary southern French casserole is definitely a project. For the best flavor, Prepare the duck confit at least one week (or up to two months) before making cassoulet—the flavor and texture improve as the duck legs cure in their fat. For more tips on breaking up the work over a few days, see Make-Ahead Tips, below. And, since you'll need only about half the confit, check out our Test Kitchen blog for ideas on how to use the rest.