Recipe courtesy of Ivy Magruder

Roasted Game Hen with Toulouse Sausage and Cassoulet

  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 22 hr
  • Prep: 1 hr 30 min
  • Inactive: 8 hr 30 min
  • Cook: 12 hr
  • Yield: 1 serving (Makes additional cassoulet and sausage)
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Toulouse Sausage: 

2 pounds pork butt, cubed

2 ounces garlic, minced

1 ounce fresh Italian parsley leaves

1/4 cup white wine

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 sausage casing

Duck Confit:

Two 8-ounce duck legs

Kosher salt

2 ounces peppercorn spice blend, coarsely crushed

1 ounce bay leaves

1/2 ounce allspice

1/2 ounce garlic cloves, crushed

1/2 ounce fresh thyme sprigs

8 cups duck fat


8 ounces carrots, diced

1 ounce garlic, minced

3 yellow onions, diced

1 cup tomato paste

Pinch paprika

2 pounds tomatoes, diced

8 cups chicken stock

1 cup dried white beans, soaked overnight

Pinch fresh thyme

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cornish Game Hen:

1 Cornish game hen, split

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 ounce chopped fresh Italian parsley, for garnish


  1. For the Toulouse sausage. Mix together the pork butt, garlic, parsley, white wine, salt, pepper and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. For the duck confit. Sprinkle both sides of the duck legs with a generous amount of salt and place the legs with the skin-side down in a roasting pan. Sprinkle with the peppercorns, bay leaves, allspice and garlic. Spread the thyme sprigs on top. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and place another pan on top to weigh it down. Refrigerate overnight.
  3. To cook the duck confit, preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
  4. Rinse the duck legs off in cold water and blot dry with a towel. Place in a roasting pan skin-side down, and cover with the duck fat. Wrap with plastic wrap and foil and cook for 6 to 8 hours. Remove the duck legs, saving the fat, and chill. Pick the meat off the bones.
  5. For the cassoulet. Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add 4 ounces of the reserved duck fat, the carrots, garlic and onions and saute until the onions are translucent. Add the tomato paste and paprika and continue to cook until the tomato paste is caramelized and fragrant. Add the tomatoes, chicken stock, beans and thyme, bring to a simmer and simmer until the beans are fully cooked and the liquid has thickened, 2 to 3 hours. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
  6. While the cassoulet is cooking, grind and blanch the Toulouse sausage. Pass the sausage mixture through the course die of a meat grinder. Stuff the casing loosely, and then twist the casing to make 5-inch long sausages; prick any air bubbles that form.
  7. To blanch the sausage, bring a pot of water to a simmer. Simmer until slightly undercooked in the center, about 15 minutes; do not boil.
  8. For the Cornish game hen: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  9. Remove the spine, rib cage and thigh bones from the Cornish hen, leaving only the wing bone and leg bone attached. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  10. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil and canola oil. Put the Cornish hen skin-side down in the skillet, sear until golden brown and flip. Place in the oven to finish cooking.
  11. In the meantime, heat a medium pan over medium-high heat and add 4 ounces of the sausage. Saute until just warmed through and lightly browned; remove to a plate. Put a large serving of the cassoulet into the pan, add the duck confit meat and heat until warmed through.
  12. Transfer the cassoulet to a serving dish and top with the sausage and Cornish game hen. Garnish with the chopped parsley and serve.

Cook’s Note

Soak the beans in water overnight before using, or parboil them by placing them in boiling water and letting them cook until there is just a little bite left in them. The uncoooked Toulouse sausages may be refrigerated for up to 4 days or frozen.

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