I’m not sure how I feel about food blog posts. Every time I see a blogger’s posts about food, there are always some amazing images of the completed dish taken on a rustic wooden table and the recipe has tons of steps which makes it seem beautiful but also overwhelming (think impending Pinterest fail). However, since early on in our apartment living, Xavier had a small stack of recipes that he wanted us to try. One of them was called “Farmhouse Pork and Apple Pie” and initially I thought it sounded kind of odd and even a little bit gross (like are we talking pork… in apple pie??? Ewwwww). Plus, we live in an apartment and not a farmhouse. Give me a farmhouse and I’ll make any meal you want! I was very surprised when we finally made it how easy and delicious it was. Aside from the amount of time it said it would take to cook, I feel like dinners that are simple enough for me, feed us (with leftovers!!!!) and fit into our budget are worth sharing (even if my table is crooked instead of rustic). Also, I made a few slight changes to the original recipe, which I always do, so that I can use what I have on hand… I’m not a pro chef… and my kitchen doesn’t always have the proper ingredients… even when I plan ahead (side note for example: I bought fresh mint last week instead of fresh sage. They are NOT similar at all and thankfully I noticed it before I added it to this meal, but still. I have no idea how that happened into my cart). Anyway, here is the original recipe and ways that I changed it to fit my kitchen.
This is from the VERYYYYY useful Taste of Home book. Xavier and I halved the recipe because it sounded like a lot of food… the half batch was still good for TWO MEALS!! Win win!
- 1 pound sliced bacon, cut into 2-inch pieces (we used like ¾ of a pound even though everything else was half 😉
- 3 medium onions, chopped
- 3 pounds boneless pork, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- Canola oil, optional
- 3 medium tart apples, peeled and chopped
- 1 teaspoon rubbed sage (who has “rubbed sage” on hand? NOT me!! Haha I think I used parsley and some rosemary instead).
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup apple cider
- 1/2 cup water
- 4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1/2 cup milk
- 5 tablespoons butter, divided
- Additional salt and pepper
- Cook bacon in an ovenproof 12-in. skillet until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. In drippings, saute onions until tender; remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Dust pork lightly with flour. (I accidentally forgot to “dust them” so I kind of threw some flour in the pan after they had been cooking – it still worked!) Brown a third at a time in drippings, adding oil if needed. Remove from the heat and drain. (I cut the pork a little smaller and cooked it in the pan a little bit longer so that we didn’t have to put it in the oven for as long).
- To the pork, add the bacon, onions, apples, sage, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Stir in cider and water. Cover (I covered it with a little bit of foil) and bake at 325° for 2 hours or until pork is tender. (We cooked it for an hour or so instead of two since the meat was nearly fully cooked when we put it in the oven).
- Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 10-15 minutes or until tender.
- Drain and mash with milk and 3 tablespoons butter. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove skillet from the oven and spread potatoes over pork mixture.
- Melt remaining butter; brush over potatoes. Broil 6 in. from the heat for 5 minutes or until topping is browned. Sprinkle with parsley if desired. Yield: 10 servings.
I left the meal in the oven and left the waiting to Xavier while I went to Journey group. He texted me twice and called me when it was over just to tell me how amazing it tasted and smelled. As soon as I walked in the door I could smell it warming up in the microwave. I just thought it was a good one to share and one that I would NOT have picked out to try on my own.
Check out the online version of the cookbook recipe here.
(You might think this is my take on an artistic shot of the finished product with my immaculate kitchen in the back… but instead it is a photo to document that we ate first and then took a picture of the leftovers to remember that we actually had enough for more than one meal… also my kitchen is small and not immaculate so there is that…)
From Taste of Home here is what it should look like…