This dish is a great example of French comfort food. Cassoulet originated in the south of France and is traditionally a rich stew made with pork skins and white beans. These days however, the word cassoulet can be used to describe dishes that are rich stews of beans with any variety of meat and hearty vegetables, braised slowly in an enclosed container in an oven. So if duck isn’t your desired meat, you can easily replace it with hearty sausages, pork belly, or beef brisket, to name a few. You’ll just have to adjust the cooking time. Also, you only need one pan for this dish!
Start with searing the duck legs in a heavy pan that was preheated to medium high and with 3 table spoons of oil. Sear each side for approximately 4 minutes or until nicely browned. Set the duck legs aside and discard half of the oil.
Add your onions, diced carrots and parsnips. Do not stir the vegetables for about 5 minutes to let them caramelize. After, stir them up and let it sit for another few minutes. Add the garlic and sautee for another 5 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the white wine.
Pour in the beans, Black Maple and tomato sauce. Stir briefly to mix. Now put the duck legs in, skin side up. Make sure to press them down so they are partially covered by the liquid and other ingredients.
Place the thyme and rosemary in the middle and press them slightly into the liquid. Cover the pan and place in a preheated 175c/350f oven and cook for 1 hour or until duck legs are cooked and tender.
Keep it closed and allow it to rest for 15 minutes outside the oven before serving.