Start early in the day. Better yet, start the day before. Cassoulet is better after it sits a while.

Duck and pork are common in cassoulet, but sausages work just fine. Or put in ham, chicken, smoked turkey, etc. All you need is 2 1/2 to 3 pounds of pork, fowl or lamb, some of it spiced or smoked.

Use a large pot that can go in the oven (6 quart is good). You also need cheesecloth and string or a bouquet garni ball.

2 1/2-3 pounds Sausages (chorizo, Andouille and Italian work well; use a variety)
1 tablespoon Oil
2 Onions
5 Tomatoes
1 Apple
3 cans White beans (any kind will do)
1 1/2 cup Chicken broth
3 tablespoons Tomato paste
1 teaspoon Sage
1/2 teaspoon Thyme
1/4 teaspoon Black pepper
1/8 teaspoon Ground clove
1/8 teaspoon Ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon Nutmeg
pinch Coriander
pinch Cardomom
6 cloves Garlic
1 Bay leaf
1 tablespoon Rosemary (I use whole; use 1 1/2 teaspoons ground)
1 Carrot
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Chop the onion.
Chop the tomatoes.
Core and chop the apple
Chop the carrot.
Bundle the garlic, bay, rosemary and carrot in cheescloth or the bouquet garni ball.
Heat the oil in the pot.
Brown the sausage in the oil. A little crust adds nice texture.
Remove the browned sausage.
Sauté the onion.
Add the tomatoes.
Sauté the tomatoes until soft.
Cover the pot and put it in the oven.
Heat an hour.
Remove the stew from the oven, stir and let sit covered for fifteen minutes.
Remove the bouquet garni bundle.
Reheat with microwave, oven or stovetop.