Poached Fillet of Lamb with Cassoulet of Beans and Fondant Vegetables

Ed Baines combines tender poached lamb with a melting bean cassoulet for a dinner party dish to remember
Poached Fillet of Lamb with Cassoulet of Beans and Fondant Vegetables
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time:
  • Effort: medium



  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 leek, finely chopped
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 8 broad bean pods, sliced diagonally (optional)
  • 1 clove garlic, pureed
  • 1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
  • 125 ml white wine
  • 4 tbsp Puy lentils, precooked
  • 1 litres chicken or vegetable stock
  • 500 g green haricot beans, precooked
  • 500 g cannellini beans, precooked
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

For the garlic confit:

  • 2 whole heads garlic, unpeeled
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • black pepper

For the slow roast tomato:

  • 4 large plum tomatoes
  • black pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • zest of 1/2 lemons, grated
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

For the lamb:

  • 1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 sprig thyme
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 50 g butter
  • 8 slices Parma ham
  • 2 lamb fillets

For the lamb poaching liquid:

  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp whole black peppercorns


1. Prepare the cassoulet of beans. Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan and the onion, carrot, leek and celery and cook over a moderate heat until softened. Add the broad bean pods and continue to cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the garlic and chilli.

2. Stir in the wine and simmer until reduced by half. Add the lentils and half of the stock and bubble for a further 5 minutes.

3. Add the haricot beans and canellini beans and stir well. Pour in the remaining stock, add the bouquet garni and continue to cook for 40 minutes, until the beans have absorbed the stock and the cassoulet is thick and creamy. Season to taste and stir in the parsley.

4. Meanwhile, set the oven to 170°C/gas 3. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add the whole heads of garlic. Boil for 10 minutes. Remove from the water, leave to cool slightly and cut each head into half, horizontally through the centre. Drizzle with a little olive oil, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and gently roast for 30 minutes.

5. Reduce the oven temperature to 120°C/gas ½. Place the tomatoes, cut side up, on a baking tray. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, sprinkle with the thyme leaves and lemon zest and drizzle over the olive oil. Place in a low oven and cook for 2-3 hours until the tomatoes are sticky and dehydrated.

6. Prepare the lamb. Cream the rosemary, thyme leaves, garlic, mustard and lemon zest together with the butter until smooth. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

7. Place 4 pieces of Parma ham, slightly overlapping onto a 20x30cm piece of cling film. Lightly brush the Parma ham with the mustard butter.

8. Place one of the lamb fillets onto the bottom edge of the Parma ham and using the cling film as you would a sushi mat, roll up the ham tightly around the fillet of lamb, taking care to push out any air pockets. Tie both ends tightly. Repeat with the remaining fillet and Parma ham.

9. Bring a large pan containing 2 litres of salted water to the boil. Add the rosemary, bay leaf and peppercorns. Reduce the heat and add the lamb fillets. Poach for 20-25 minutes.

10. Remove from the poaching liquid and leave to rest for 3-4 minutes.

11. Carefully remove the cling film, cut each fillet of lamb into 4-5 slices using a very sharp knife and serve immediately with the, bean cassoulet, garlic confit and slow roast tomatoes.

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