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Celebrating French July with Duck Cassoulet and a Rhône-inspired wine

In Franschhoek, July is the month of the annual Bastille Festival – a celebration of all things French, when the whole town is dressed in the colours of the Drapeau Tricolore.

Try this delicious recipe for a traditional French duck cassoulet – such a warming and comforting dish! Do serve it with our 2012 Culinaria Shiraz Grenache – these two are made for each other!

Duck Cassoulet

Serves 4


200 g butter-beans

100 g red kidney-beans

100 g haricot-beans/cannellini

3 tablespoons duck fat

200 g smoked pork belly, cubed

1 onion, chopped

2 carrots, cubed

2 star anise,

peel of ½ orange

1 teaspoon peppercorns

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon tomato paste

3 ripe plum tomatoes

2 litres white chicken stock

2 legs and thighs confit duck, meat removed

100 g smoked, spiced sausage (bologna), sliced

salt and pepper




Soak the dried beans in cold water for 12 hours.

Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Drain the beans and set aside. In a casserole, heat the duck fat, add the cubed pork belly and brown slightly. Remove from the casserole and set aside. Add the onions and carrots and sauté until translucent and soft.

Place the star anise, orange peel, peppercorns and bay leaf in the casserole. Add the tomato paste and tomatoes and cook for a further 5 minutes. Place the pork belly and soaked beans in the casserole. Add the chicken stock and season with salt and pepper. Cover with lid and place in the oven for 90 minutes.

Remove the casserole from the oven, add the duck meat and sliced sausage, then place back in the oven for a further 90 minutes.

Just before serving, adjust the seasoning and add a handful of bread-crumbs to the cassoulet and bake uncovered for 10 minutes. Once browned, remove from the oven and serve with a glass of Leopard’s Leap Culinaria Shiraz Grenache.


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