To make the beans, combine the first 7 ingredients in a large, heavy stockpot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the beans are tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Skim from time to time to remove any foam that forms on the surface.
Drain the beans, reserving the cooking liquid; discard the bay leaves.
When the ham hocks are cool enough to handle, cut the meat off the bones, discarding the skin and bones. Chop the meat and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Season the venison with 1 teaspoon of the Essence. Combine the flour and the remaining 1 teaspoon Essence in a shallow bowl. Dredge the venison in the flour, shaking off the excess. Reserve the remaining flour.
Heat the oil in a large heavy ovenproof pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. In batches, add the venison and cook, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to paper towels to drain, leaving the oil in the pot.
Add more oil to the pot if needed to make 1/4 cup. Add the onions, celery, bell peppers, salt, and cayenne, and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add the andouille and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the andouille is hot, about 3 minutes.
Add 1/4 cup of the reserved seasoned flour and cook, stirring constantly, to make a medium-dark, peanut butter–colored roux, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the Worcestershire. Slowly add the reserved bean cooking liquid and the chicken stock, stirring to a blend. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the reserved ham hock meat, venison, and beans.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375°F.
To make the crust, pulse all the ingredients in a food processor for 30 seconds, or until blended.
Top the cassoulet with the bread crumb mixture and bake until the crust is golden brown and crispy, 30 to 45 minutes.
To serve, spoon onto dinner plates and serve hot.
Yield: 6 servings