My mother gave me a Lodge Dutch oven for Christmas so I have been researching all sorts of meals to make with my new pan. A cassoulet kept coming up over and over. A cassoulet is actually a French peasant dish made from sausages, bacon (or pork skin) and white beans. Many countries have a version of this dish which is hearty on beans to make it filling and cooks for long periods of time to get a nice deep rich flavor.
I used what I had on hand to make this dish, ground beef and pinto beans. You can use whatever meat you like and beans you have on hand. I didn’t have time to cook my dish as long as I would have liked but it was still very tasty. For a non-bean loving family my kids did a great job eating this dinner.
I served this with a hearty spinach salad and broccoli to complete our meal.
An American Cassoulet over Herbed Biscuits
- 1 1/2 to 2 lbs. lean ground beef
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, if needed
- 1 small onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
- 2 1/2 cups beef stock
- 1/2 cup red wine (or beef stock if you prefer)
- 2 (15 oz) cans beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (16 oz) can petite diced tomatoes, drained
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- Parmesan cheese, for serving if desired
- In a dutch oven over medium heat begin cooking ground beef and breaking it up into small pieces. If ground beef sticks to pan add olive oil to pan. Once beef has started to brown add onion and garlic to pan. Continue to cook until meat has cooked through.
- Drain any excess grease from the pan.
- Add tomato paste to the pan and mix well with meat mixture. Allow the paste to cook, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. Paste should begin to darken in color to a deep brick color.
- Add red wine, beef stock, beans, tomatoes, basil, oregano, salt and pepper to pot. Stir until well blended. Bring meal to a simmer and lower heat to keep at a simmer for 10 minutes stirring occassionally.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once pot has simmered cover and place in oven for 20 minutes to 1 hour. The longer it cooks the thicker it will become and the richer the flavors. It is up to you how you like it.
- One removed from oven taste and adjust spices to your liking. Serve over biscuits or by itself in a bowl.