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Kosher Cassoulet?

I've been day dreaming about cassolet. Any ideas of what meat to use? (I'm thinking I'll be able to find a kosher sausage to use, and duck is fine (and yummy fatty)). but what about the bacon/salt pork/pork shoulder/ ham hocks, I'm not sure. I'm pretty sure all of these are very fatty cuts of meat. Would perhaps adding more duck in work? Are there other meats which would be good for cassoulet? Any one have experience making a kosher version of cassoulet? Thanks!!

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  1. I don't cook Kosher. However, I like the idea of a cassoulet that can be eaten by friends who keep Kosher.

    I love the idea of using Kosher sausage (salami?). For the "smoky" bit, don't some Kosher markets sell smoked turkey legs? You'll get plenty of fatty goodness from the duck, so I don't think you'll miss the salt pork/ham hocks thing.

    I'm a big fan of cassoulet and I'd love to see what other hounds are going to do about this "no-pork" cassoulet question...

    1. What about smoked turkey thigh/leg? It'll add flavor not fat, but you'll have the fat from the duck.

      10 Replies
      1. re: cheesecake17

        I'll try to find one. I've never heard of a smoked turkey leg. (at least not for sale in the market.) That would help a great deal. I wonder about adding some sort of cured meat as well? Many cassoulet recipes I looked at had some cured meat involved. I guess salami would be that, but salami is rather different than say bacon or salt pork, much... firmer. (I think salami might be a bit strange, I was thinking more along the lines of lamb or beef sausage in a lamb or beef casing for the sausage). mmmmh I already had dinner but I'm getting hungry thinking about this.

        1. re: Magelet

          Rubashkin has just started selling the smoked turkey legs again, or at least they've reappeared in my local market (regular NYC grocery store.)

          My sense is that Shaogi recommended salami not because he/she thought it'd be the most suitable sausage, but because he/she doesn't know what sausages are available kosher, and assumed that salami was a safe bet.

          1. re: GilaB

            Gila,

            Thighs too? Or just legs? Meal Mart sells a leg but not a thigh. The thigh (they called it a Turkey Shawarma) was glorious for adding smoky flavor and mildly fatty meat.

            1. re: DeisCane

              I've only seen smoked legs, but I'm not generally shopping in a market with an exhaustive kosher meat selection. They usually have a few different types of packaged chicken, some ground turkey, the aforementioned legs, and that's it.

              1. re: GilaB

                We've been smoking for a few years and turkey drumsticks are an incredible flavor enhancer for soups and other dishes. They freeze very well so we do a dozen or so at a time (you need to soak them overnight in a Ziploc bag full of brine, otherwise the 4 or 5 hours it takes to smoke them will dry them out). They end up almost a bronze color from the smoke and the intensity of the flavor perks up any dish.

                I think it would be an excellent option for the cassoulet.

              2. re: DeisCane

                I saw the turkey shawarma last night in Glatt Mart. They also had something called pepperoni sticks and a case of smoked items.

              3. re: GilaB

                Your sense was kinda right. I'm aware that there're lots of sausages that're kosher, however, I just thought that nice, garlicky chunks of salami would go just fine in cassoulet, unless you'd like something with a little less fat, and perhaps a more "refined" taste...

                  1. re: craigcep

                    Yes, with a new owner. I'm surprised they haven't changed the name, given all of the negative associations, although they've changed Agriprocessers to Agri-Star. They're only doing poultry as yet, although there's been mention in news articles of maybe starting up the beef line soon.

                1. re: Magelet

                  Where are you located? - depending where you are we can make suggestions on where to get kosher sausages, possible bacon replacement such as a house cured beef fry etc -

              4. I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned this before, BUT: cassoulet = chulent. Really. I am not joking. These are the same dish.

                If you want smoky flavour, use smoked "anything" that you enjoy. Duck would be nice. The meat(s) you choose add flavours, but cassoulet is about the long cooked beans. The fat adds flavour and succulence. Low fat cassoulet is almost an oxymoron.

                1 Reply
                1. re: embee

                  It is quite similar to Hungarian chulent but I think most Polish-style chulents would seem quite different (though I understand your point was as much about technique as flavors).