French cookery | Spencer’s Normandy Pork Casserole recipe

This tasty dish is a Normandy speciality and is as good as it sounds.

Chef Spencer, our chef and host of fantastic cooking holidays and experiences in Normandy, France, chose this as one of his favourites of the many regional dishes to enjoy.

If you love this classic, you may want to join Spencer for one of his 3 or 4 day cooking breaks in France and take in the food, wine, countryside, markets and local shops of this wonderful area.


50g (2oz) Isigny butter (or whatever butter you have on hand)
2-4 Normandy apples peeled and cored and roughly chopped
1kg (2lb 4oz) shoulder of free-range butcher bought pork, cubed
200g (7oz) lardons or chunky streaky bacon, chopped
16 shallots, peeled and left whole
1 small onion, chopped
2 celery sticks, chopped
300ml (½pt) Normandy dry cider
300ml (½pt) chicken stock
6 tbsp half-fat crème fraîche
2 tbsp Dijon Mustard
2 tbsp cornflour/water mix
Teaspoon chopped tarragon

You will need:

A large, flameproof casserole dish


  1. Heat the oven to 180 C, 160 C fan, 330 F, gas 3/4.
  2. Heat half the butter in the casserole dish, add the pork, season and fry for about 10 minutes until thoroughly browned. Remove from the dish and set aside.
  3. With the remaining butter fry the onion, shallots and lardons.
  4. Combine all the pork, the lardons, shallots, onion, chopped apples and celery in the casserole. Pour over the cider and chicken stock to cover. Cover the dish and cook in the oven for 2 hours until the pork is tender.
  5. Add the crème fraîche, cornflour mix, mustard and tarragon to the casserole. Heat on the hob and stir until the sauce has thickened slightly.

Serving suggestions

Definitely serve up with potatoes.

As for a drink accompaniment, cider would be great, or try a wonderful Cremant which is a fifth of the price of champagne, but made exactly the same way and equally as splendid.

The dishes of Normandy and other classic French dishes don’t have to be complicated to be amazing… come join Chef Spencer and learn all of his secrets.

You can find more information about Spencer’s French cookery holidays here.

Or, feel free to explore our full range of cookery holidays here.