Roasted Garlic and Butternut Squash Cassoulet

Cassoulet in Dutch Oven
Cassoulet in Dutch Oven

As mentioned earlier this week, I’m testing out some high-fiber recipes, preferably ones that aren’t going to add too much other fats or calories for a relative who finds herself having to meet a pretty high fiber requirement via doctor’s orders.

So I decided to start out with dishes that included beans, which are high in fiber, and since it had been mentioned recently by a coworker, I started out with a cassoulet, a French style slow-cooked bean stew or casserole.

And since I was looking for something a little lower in fat, I one of my favorite light cooking sites,

I found something pretty good looking that included squash (much to my squash-hating husband’s dismay). I followed their recipe (below) mostly to a teaspoon, though I added more onions and used up some acorn squash mixed with the butternut squash. I also roasted the garlic while baking something else so that turning on the oven to roast one little head of garlic didn’t seem like such a waste.

One thing I didn’t note until later was that this dish did not have a whopping amount of fiber (I was looking for double-digits), but it wasn’t bad either. A serving of 1 3/4 cups has about 8 grams of fiber, 259 calories and 7.7 grams of fat. Served with a cup side of steamed broccoli would add another 4.5 grams of fiber; a cup of collard greens would add more than 5 grams. I chose a salad because my body isn’t quite that ready yet for so much fiber.

Roasted Garlic and Butternut Squash Cassoulet (From


1 whole garlic head
4 ounces pancetta, chopped
2 cups vertically sliced onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
4 1/2 cups (1/2-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash (about 2 pounds)
1/2 cup organic vegetable broth (such as Swanson Certified Organic)
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 (16-ounce) cans cannellini or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 bay leaf
2 (1-ounce) slices white bread
2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 350°.

Remove white papery skin from garlic head (do not peel or separate the cloves). Wrap garlic head in foil. Bake at 350° for 1 hour; cool 10 minutes. Separate cloves; squeeze to extract garlic pulp. Set half of garlic pulp aside; reserve remaining garlic pulp for another use. Discard skins.

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add pancetta; sauté 5 minutes or until crisp. Remove pancetta from pan, reserving drippings in pan. Add onion and 1 tablespoon oil to drippings in pan; sauté 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 25 minutes or until onion is very tender and browned, stirring frequently. Stir in vinegar.

Preheat oven to 375°.

Add garlic pulp, pancetta, squash, and next 6 ingredients (through bay leaf) to onion mixture, stirring well. Place bread in a food processor, and pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs measure about 1 cup. Combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and 1/2 teaspoon olive oil; sprinkle evenly over squash mixture. Cover and bake at 375° for 50 minutes or until squash is tender. Uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes or until topping is browned. Discard bay leaf. Sprinkle with parsley.