Mounjetado/Mongetado – cassoulet in Ariège

Mongetado

There are a lot of recipes for cassoulet here in the southwest of France. Castelnaudary, Carcassonne or Toulouse fight for the crown of the best recipe or the most original one.

Cassoulet is a hearty dish and meant for winter, but restaurants here serve it to tourists in the summer when a lighter diet may be called for.

The origin of the dish goes far beyond the introduction of freezers and other electric appliances, and even before that tomatoes became known in France in the 16th century.

This means that most meats are salted or confit — preserved in fat.

In the mounjetado or “estouffad de mounges” (slowly cooked beans) here in the Ariège people use “coustellous” (salted spare ribs), dried liver sausage and another sausage made from pig’s rind – the couenne.

In my version, I used spare ribs (less salty), dropped the liver sausage and added confit de canard – because I had made that previously – and fresh sausage.

No tomatoes here, but onions and carrots.

The white beans had been prepared in season and stored away.

This dish does not call for an entrée or dessert.

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