Normandy pork with apples & cider

Normandy pork with apples & cider

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(36 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 8 hrs, 30 mins in a slow cooker (3hrs 30 mins on the hob)


Serves 4

True comfort food for chilly winter evenings, this slow cooker recipe combines meltingly tender pork, smoked bacon and cider

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal594
  • fat37g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs19g
  • sugars15g
  • fibre4g
  • protein41g
  • salt2.8g
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  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil or olive oil
    Rapeseed oil

    Rapeseed oil

    If you want a light alternative to other cooking oils, rapeseed is a great choice and has…

  • 600g pork shoulder or pork cheeks, fat and sinew trimmed, cut into chunky pieces



    One of the most versatile types of meat, pork is economical, tender if cooked correctly, and…

  • 1 large onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 carrots, cut into chunky pieces



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 2 celery sticks, cut into chunky pieces
  • 200g pack smoked bacon lardons
  • 250ml dry cider (or use 100ml apple juice mixed with 3 tbsp cider vinegar and 100ml water)



    Cider is an alcoholic beverage made from the fermented juice of apples. Apple orchards were…

  • 2 eating apples (we used Braeburn), cored and cut into chunky pieces



    Grown in temperate regions, apples are one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits. There are…

  • 1 chicken stock cube



    While it's the traditional Christmas bird, turkey is good to eat all year round, though…

  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3-4 thyme sprigs, plus extra to serve (optional)
  • 140g crème fraîche
  • 1-2 tbsp Dijon mustard, plus extra to serve (optional)
  • 1-2 tsp cornflour, optional
  • mashed potato and greens, to serve


  1. Heat half the oil in a large pan and brown the meat in batches. Don’t overcrowd the pan, and only turn the meat when it has a deep brown crust on the underside, as this will add lots of flavour to the stew. When one batch is cooked, tip it into the slow cooker and continue with the next batch, adding more oil as you need it.

  2. When all the meat has been transferred to the slow cooker, add the onion, carrots and celery to the pan and cook for 5-10 mins to just soften, scraping any meaty bits up from the bottom of the pan. Tip the veg into the slow cooker. Add the lardons to the pan and fry until crispy. Pour in the cider, bubble for 1 min, again scraping the bottom of the pan, then tip the cider and lardons into the slow cooker too. Add the apples, stock cube and herbs to the slow cooker, pour in 400ml water, season well and turn the heat to Low. Cover with the lid and cook for 6-8 hrs until the meat is very tender. (If you don’t have a slow cooker, tip all the ingredients back into the pan, cover with a lid and cook for 3 hrs over a low heat, stirring every now and then to prevent it from catching on the bottom. You may have to add a splash of water during cooking if the sauce looks dry.)

  3. Turn your slow cooker up to High. Add the crème fraîche and mustard to the stew and check the seasoning. If the sauce is thin, you can thicken it with the cornflour – ladle 2 spoonfuls of the sauce into a pan and bring to a simmer, mix the cornflour with 1-2 tsp cold water to make a paste, then stir it into the sauce. Once thickened, return the sauce to the slow cooker and cook for 10 mins more on High, stirring occasionally (or for 5 mins on the hob). Serve with mashed potato, greens and extra mustard and thyme, if you like.

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Comments, questions and tips

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6th Jan, 2019
Just made this & it was lovely, got good reviews from my boyfriend. I tweaked slightly and added a teaspoon of garlic granules & lots of pepper. As I doubled up portions I had to thicken sauce with cornflour & I also used 5 spoons of the mustard . The pork was melt in the mouth. Cooked for 5.5 hours on low in slow cooker.
2nd Sep, 2018
Really easy and tasty slow cooker meal. 1 tbsp mustard is more than sufficient, I’ll just use a tsp next time. I left out the pancetta and don’t think it mattered. I found it made 5 decent portions so have an extra for the freezer. Will make again, with a bit more cider (and less stock) and a bit less mustard.
10th Mar, 2018
I used pancetta cubes (130g), and the resulting sauce was much too salty. I think I would leave out the bacon altogether next time. The meat turned out very tender, though.
Carol Robinson's picture
Carol Robinson
29th Dec, 2017
Fabulous recipe really tasty
Beccy o's picture
Beccy o
22nd Nov, 2017
Simple and totally yummy! The whole family loved it. I used a slow cooker and cooked on high for about 5 hrs. Delicious!
4th Jan, 2017
Really tasty dish from the slow cooker. Added a little less water as I always find slow cooker meals a little watery. No need for cornflour after adding creme fraiche. Will definitely make it again
14th Nov, 2016
My wife made this the other day, it is beautiful. just perfect for a cold day. walked in to the house after a day at the office to smell this smokey infused aroma. and then once finsihed with the creme fraiche etc it was out of this world. We used Thatchers Vintage cider. & Braeburn apples.
6th Nov, 2016
Lovely. Added a chopped leek to the veg, sage and garlic when frying off the lardons. Turned into a delicious blend of sweet, sour and savoury. The first hit of acidity from the creme fraiche leads to rich savoury and sweetness - never a boring forkful. Cooked it without a slow cooker for 2.5 hours and the meat was just getting tender, but not melting (1 hour on the hob in a saucepan, 1.5 hours in the oven in pyrex). Serve with crisp roasties to add a different texture. Definitely a keeper.
16th Mar, 2016
Fabulous recipe. It was really so yummy. It will definitively be one of my regular recipes.
Vicki R
6th Feb, 2016
This turned out beautifully! I started it on the hob but finished it in the oven as I don't have a slow cooker and it worked fine. Pork was meltingly tender. The mustardyness was just fine for my family - I used 2tbsp of Waitrose Dijon mustard. Lush. Even the husband said "you could make this when people come round" which from him is high praise indeed, so it must be good!


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13th Nov, 2017
This recipe works well with chorizo or pancetta as an alternative to bacon lardons.
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