|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
This recipe for pork and cider together with a little mustard and cream makes a delicious, lovely, and light casserole that is very easy to prepare. It's an excellent lunch dish or main course for dinner or an alternative Sunday lunch. Serve with seasonal vegetables and new potatoes—it's delicious.
A hefty dose of French tarragon is a nice addition here as it balances very well with the punch of the cider and the bite of the mustard. Feel free to change the herbs in this dish but read the note at the end of the recipe first.
- 2 ounces/55 g butter
- 42 ounces/1.2k g pork shoulder (cut into large cubes)
- 7 ounces/200 g bacon (thick-cut, roughly chopped)
- 1 onion (roughly chopped)
- 2 celery ribs (roughly chopped)
- 12 shallots (peeled and left whole)
- 12 ounces/350 ml dry cider (use apple juice for a non-alcoholic version)
- 12 ounces/350 ml chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoons wholegrain mustard
- 3 tablespoons French tarragon leaves (chopped)
- 4 ounces/125 ml creme fraiche (or sour cream if not available)
Heat the oven to 325 F/170 C/Gas 3
Heat a large flameproof casserole over medium heat. Add half of the butter and heat to foaming. Add half of the cubed pork and fry for 10 minutes until golden and brown, stirring from time to time. Take care not to burn. Remove the cooked pork and repeat with the remaining butter and pork.
Heat a frying pan until hot and dry fry the bacon until crisp. Remove and set aside. Fry the onion, celery, and shallots in the same pan until slightly soft.
Place all the vegetables, bacon, and pork in the casserole. Add the cider and stock, bring to a gentle simmer on the stovetop then cover with a tight-fitting lid and place in the heated oven. Cook for 2 hours or until the pork is tender. Check from time to time to make sure the liquid hasn't dried out. When cooked, remove from the oven.
Mix the cornstarch with the water to form a thick paste. Add the paste plus the mustard, tarragon, and creme fraiche to the casserole dish and stir thoroughly.
Gently cook on the stovetop until the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve.
Note: This casserole is flavored with tarragon, a lovely combination with pork, but use the softly flavored French tarragon variety or the dish will be overpowered. You can substitute the tarragon with your favorite herb although, if using stronger herbs, you might want to reduce the quantity, especially if it's sage or rosemary, as these also would overpower the dish.