Pork and Cider Casserole is one of my all time favourites. It’s a casserole, so totally standard comfort food, but it’s different. The flavour isn’t really like anything else that we eat, it’s a refreshing and slightly tangy casserole, as opposed to a rich casserole. The tarragon and mustard, as well as the cider just give it this wonderful spark. It’s almost like a summer casserole. Although, I always have a desperate urge to drink cider when it’s hot outside, and I rarely drink it in the winter months so perhaps that is just me.
While the flavours of Pork and Cider Casserole are wonderful, and the combination works really well, it’s really the pork that makes it. If you wanted to, you could just diced Leftover Roast pork, which would work well. The bacon bulks it out a lot, so it’s not a problem if there’s not too much left.
However, as a new family meal, you can buy diced pork so cheaply that it’s always worth it. I got this pack from Asda for around £3 for 600g, which is brilliant. This Pork and Cider casserole served with mash easily feeds four of us, with lots left to freeze for another time. It’s a great meal on a budget, whether you are using Leftover Roast Pork or fresh.
How to Serve Pork and Cider Casserole
As I said, we tend to just serve with mashed potato. I absolutely love mash, so any excuse really. It would also be great with crusty bread to dip in the juices, or boiled new potatoes.
I generally use half fat creme fraiche, because I honestly think it tastes the same, so that’s what I’ve included in the recipe. But swap it if you prefer full fat. You can also use less butter if you wanted to, but please don’t skip it, the butter adds such a fantastic flavour and it just wouldn’t be the same without it.
Pork and Cider Casserole
- 600 g Diced Pork
- 300 g Bacon – Chopped
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 1 Red Onion – Diced
- 12 Shallots – Peeled
- 4 Large Carrots – Peeled and roughly chopped
- 500 ml Dry Cider
- Pinch black pepper
- 350 ml Chicken stock
- 125 ml Half fat Creme Fraiche
- 2 tbsp Tarragon
- 2 tbsp Wholegrain Mustard
- 2 tbsp Cornflour
- 2 tbsp Water
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and melt the butter on the hob in a large, lidded ovenproof dish
- Add the pork and fry for 5 minutes until browned
- Add the bacon and fry for a further 5 minutes
- Stir in the onion and shallots and fry for 2 minutes, until coated in butter
- Tip in the carrots, cider, stock and a good pinch of pepper, stir and bring to a simmer
- Cover and bake in the oven for 2 hours
- In a jug mix the creme frachie, cornflour, water, tarragon and mustard
- Remove the casserole from the oven, uncover and stir
- Pour in the creme fraiche mixture and stir
- Return to the oven, uncovered for a further 30 minutes
- Serve straight from the oven
- I serve with mashed potato, but bread would work well too
- If after cooking, the sauce is still very thin, thicken by simmering on the hob, uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring regularly.