2 pounds country-style spareribs (or pork shoulder, cut into 1-inch-thick slices)
2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced, plus 1 whole clove
2 whole sprigs fresh thyme, plus 2 tablespoons thyme leaves
1 pound bacon (slab is best), cut into 2-inch pieces
1 large stalk celery, chopped
1/2 medium carrot, peeled and chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup Garden Bloody Mary mix
1 cup white wine
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes, with their juice
2 bay leaves
2 (14-ounce) cans white beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup coarse bread crumbs
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Place the spareribs in a heavy pot with half the onion, half the minced garlic, and the thyme sprigs.
- Cover with a lid or foil and bake for 1 1/2 hours.
- Remove the ribs; set aside.
- In the same pot, over medium heat, brown the bacon.
- Remove all but about 2 tablespoons of the fat and add the celery, carrot, salt, pepper, thyme leaves, and the remaining onion and garlic (minced and whole) and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the broth, bloody mary mix, wine, tomatoes, bay leaves, and beans. Bring to a simmer, then add the cooked ribs.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the olive oil, bread crumbs, and parsley.
- Sprinkle the bread-crumb mixture over the cassoulet and bake for 1 hour, uncovered, occasionally pressing the bread crumbs into the cassoulet to thicken it.
- Let cool and serve.