Heat the olive oil in a large flameproof casserole and add the chunks of pork. Cook over a high heat for 10 minutes or until well browned, stirring frequently. Use a draining spoon to transfer the meat to a plate.
Reduce the heat to moderate and add the carrots, celery, leeks, bay leaves and sage to the casserole. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the leeks are softened. Pour in the cider and stock. Return the pork to the casserole with any juices. Add the mustard and mix well.
Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover the casserole. Simmer gently for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the potatoes and swede. Bring back to simmering point, cover again and cook over low heat for a further 30 minutes or until the pork and vegetables are cooked.
Meanwhile, prepare the dumplings. Mix together the breadcrumbs, flour, baking powder, chives, parsley and a generous pinch of salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add the egg, milk and oil. Mix the liquids together, then gradually stir in the dry ingredients to make a dough.
Bring a saucepan of water to a steady but not too fierce boil. Dust your hands with flour, then divide the dumpling mixture into 12 portions and roll each one into a round dumpling. Keep dusting your hands with flour to prevent the mixture from sticking to them. Add the dumplings to the water, adjust the heat so that they simmer gently and cook for about 10 minutes or until risen and firm.
Taste the casserole and add salt and pepper, if necessary. Use a draining spoon to lift the dumplings out of the water, shaking gently to drain them well, and arrange them on top of the casserole. Serve at once.
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 450 g (1 lb) lean boneless pork, cut into 2.5 cm (1 in) chunks
- 2 carrots, cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes
- 2 celery sticks, sliced
- 2 leeks, sliced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tbsp finely shredded fresh sage or 1 tsp dried sage
- 300 ml (10 fl oz) dry cider
- 300 ml (10 fl oz) pork or chicken stock, preferably home-made
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 675 g (1½ lb) potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes
- 225 g (8 oz) swede, cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes
- salt and pepper
- Fresh herb dumplings:
- 100 g (3½ oz) fresh white breadcrumbs
- 55 g (2 oz) self-raising flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 3 tbsp snipped fresh chives
- 3 tbsp chopped parsley
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 3 tbsp semi-skimmed milk
- 1 tbsp sunflower oil
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