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This fried apples and onions recipe is about as old-fashioned and pioneer as you can get. Plus, apples bacon and onions is a wonderful fall trio of flavor.
Who knew that apples and onions go together like peanut butter and jelly? Mother Wilder sure did. As a matter of fact, this dish was one of Almanzo Wilder’s favorites as boy. You can read about his birthday breakfast of apples and onions in the book, “Farmer Boy”, from the “Little House on The Prairie” series.
Caramelized apples and onions made a delicious side dish for just about any meal back in the pioneer days. It had the sweetness of the onions, combined with the tartness of the apples. The salty of the salt pork or bacon brought the flavors together in a wonderful way.
Now, you can be a modern day pioneer, and channel your inner Ingalls family, with this easy recipe.
The original recipe calls for tart apples. This would include such varieties like Granny Smith, Cortland, Pink Lady, or Jonathon apples. While some are more tart than others, these all lean more towards the “tart” side and are great for baking, and in this dish.
However, if you want to add more sweetness, or tone down the tart, add some more sweet flavors of apples such as Fuji, Honeycrisp, or Golden Delicious. I used a combination of both Granny Smith, Cortland, and Red Delicious apples to get the best flavor.
Originally, the recipe was made with homegrown pork. This would be cured bacon that they made, or with a side of salt pork. Salt pork is what they would have removed from the belly to make the bacon or ham, but it was a great flavor additive.
That being said, you can use nearly any type of bacon you desire with this. For my family, we used turkey bacon. Try duck, chicken, or bison bacon for a unique flavor blend. If you use a lower fat bacon like turkey, you will need to add a bit of olive oil or butter to cook the onions.
Since this only calls for 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar, I wasn’t too worried about that amount. If you want to substitute honey, I would suggest adding a bit of butter as well to help it caramelize. Start with 1-2 teaspoons of butter at the same time you add the honey. Or go with maple syrup, I think maple bacon, apples and onions would be delightful!
Another sub that you can try if you want to watch the sugars you are eating is brown sugar Swerve. It melts and cooks up just like the regular brown sugar, and is very diabetic friendly.
This Little House Cookbook fried apples and onions recipe is an old-fashioned treat and part of our cooking like Ma Ingalls series!
There you have have it, fried apples and onions straight out of a pioneer kitchen into yours! Have you ever made or tried this before? How do you like it?