This delightful side dish of honey sauteed apples, prunes, and onions is a real treat during the holidays. For many in Norway, it accompanies ribbe (roasted pork belly) for the Christmas meal as one of the many side dishes. The sweetness and caramelization cuts through the saltiness and fat of the pork while offering a nice brightness and texture. It’s also a dish you can pull together very quickly and it pairs very well with other pork dishes, turkey, and wild meats.
The inclusion of dried fruits during the holidays is most likely thanks to the sailors traveling home at Christmas. For them, it was important to bring back goods that would last the long routes they would have to take. So, items such as dried fruit and spices were perfectly ideal. Therefore, make sure you don’t forego the prunes, not only do they provide a nice history to the dish, they also balance the flavors of the apples and onions.
Honey Sautéed Apples, Prunes, and Onions (honningstekte epler, svisker og løk)
- 2 tablespoons mild-flavored oil
- 1 large red onion, cut into boats
- Flaky salt
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 crisp apples, cored and cut into boats
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 12 prunes
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary or thyme
- Black pepper
In a large frying pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and a pinch of flaky salt and sauté, stirring often, for 8 to 10 minutes or until starting to caramelize. Add the butter, apples, and honey and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until the apples are golden and have softened slightly. Add the prunes and rosemary, and cook for a further 3 minutes or until the apples have softened more and everything is golden. Season to taste with flaky salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Perfect to accompany Norwegian Roasted Pork Belly (ribbe).