Friday was Boy2's third birthday. We had a small celebration for him that evening, just the four of us. The bigger event was yesterday, and it was still very moderate. There were 8 adults and 5 kids. I was feeling ambitious when I planned the menu last week, so we had cassoulet. Which was actually kind of fun to make.
I looked up lots of cassoulet recipes and decided to wing it. I soaked the white beans on friday night. Saturday morning, I browned onions, garlic, and giant slabs of bacon in a smidge of duck fat. To this was added a large quantity of the drained beans, homemade stock, and fresh thyme. This mixture cooked very slowly for hours.
In a cast-iron dutch oven, I browned more onions and garlic in duck fat, 5 duck confit thighs, 5 herb saucisses, 1 saucisse de Morteau (a huge cured sausage which is famous but I don't know why, although it was delicious), 1 saucisse de Montbéliard (also famous, also don't know why, also delicious), and of course, a giant l saucisson à l'ail (garlic sausage). I added tomato paste, a bottle of white wine, and 2 bay leaves. This mixture also cooked slowly for hours.
Sunday morning, the two were brought together with minimal splashing and staining of white shirts (why oh why wasn't I wearing my apron?). Then the happy couple cooked together slowly for 4 more hours.
The result was served with a kick-ass Bordeaux and garlic bread made with two baguette de campagne, chives from the yard, and Brittany rock salted butter.
Dessert was cake au citron and a chocolate chiffon cake which I layered and iced with whipped chocolate ganache.
Wish you could've been here to see him blow out his candles.