Saturday, August 24, 2019


I grew up in the south where all meat was fried with gravy on the side.

Since my wife and I have been together, I do most of the cooking.   She makes a good meatloaf, and once a year a pineapple up-side-down cake for my birthday.    But she lets me think that I am the better cook.

 The famous Cajun cook, Justin Wilson, usually started his dishes with ‘the trinity’ – onions, celery and garlic.    I use ‘the trinity’ as the base for much of my meals.

But there is another combination I like for pork: that is equal parts of sauté onion and apple.

There’s a story behind this.
Back when my wife and I attended college we took a summer course attending a week of living history at the famous Norlands Farm in Livermore, Maine.   The farm was the home of the Washburn family during the eighteen-hundreds.

The day you arrived at the farm you attended a lecture about the people living at the farm during that era; you were given a persona; and then you walked up the hill to the graveyard and located your grave.  During the following week you lived and worked as that person: Men attended the livestock, milked the cows and worked in the fields  - women did women’s work.  We lived by lamplight at night and used the outhouse in the barn when we had to go – except during the night, there was a chamber pot under the bed.   For one day, during the stay, men swapped their persona with the women: attending the kitchen garden, washing, cooking and cleaning, sewing…    All the meals were cooked on a wood stove - prepared from an old 1800’s cook book.   One of the evening meals was liver smothered in onions and apples.  After working a day in the fields, it was delicious.

At the end of the week we had to select a subject, do a research and write a paper on some local historical happening during the 1800’s.  We would not receive our grade until the research paper was turned in and graded by the Norlands history professor. 

AN ASIDE:   During our four years of college, my wife and I lived in an old 1832 farmhouse, with no electricity, no indoor facilities and no running water.  We grew a food garden, studied by lamplight at night and heated with firewood.   We actually felt like we had come up in time at the Norlands; because they had a pump in the kitchen for water, and at home we carried our water for bathing and cooking from the stream behind the house.

Though I do make onions and apples with a lot of pork meals, for cooking pork chops in the slow cooker I sauté onions and then add applesauce, season one side of the chops with Paul Prudhomme Meat Magic, and cook them on high for four hours then turn them to low for the last three hours.  They are tender and delicious.


the Ol’Buzzard


  1. That living history summer course sounds amazing! You know, braised red cabbage with onions and apple slices is pretty delicious too.

  2. Lawdy Lawd! I want to come to your house for Sunday dinner. Living on a farm for a year sounds like my kind of college program. Every college should have that program for at least one or two years. It would give students a lesson they could live with for the rest of their lives.

  3. Pork should always be accompanied by apples in some form or other.


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