The Surprising Meat Added To Calvin Coolidge's Favorite Pie

When most people think of apple pie, they probably think of something sweet with notes of cinnamon, loaded with fresh apples and brown sugar inside a flaky crust and maybe even served with a topping of whipped cream or ice cream. It is a pie that often brings to mind the holiday season, since it is the perfect dessert to enjoy with family and friends after a big festive meal. But it turns out, there are a few somewhat more adventurous apple pie recipes out there than the ones we are used to, and one such apple pie recipe was the favorite dessert of none other than our 30th president, Calvin Coolidge.

The former president was known to be a bit of an adventurous eater, who enjoyed noshing on a wide variety of foods, including Vermont country pickles and Mrs. Coolidge's Chicken Chop Suey, according to Business Insider. But while President Coolidge may have enjoyed eating, his wife was notoriously unskilled in the kitchen. In fact, the president was known to tease the First Lady about her lack of domestic talent, even ribbing her about her pie crust in front of guests, according to Kai's Coolidge Blog. However, Grace Coolidge did serve up a mean Butterscotch Pie, which was apparently tasty enough to be featured in the woman's magazine "The Delineator." But whether the recipe was her own creation or simply one she was known to serve in the White House, is a little unclear.

President Coolidge loved his mother's pork apple pies

Regardless, President Coolidge wasn't a butterscotch man. Instead, his favorite dessert recipe belonged not to his wife, but to his mother, who seemed to have some pretty interesting culinary ideas herself, as demonstrated by the fact that her beloved apple pie recipe called for one surprising ingredient: Pork. Apparently, this meaty dessert was among the president's favorite foods, with "The Presidents' Cookbook" reporting, via Food Timeline, that Coolidge once claimed he "never ate anything as good as his mother's pork apple pies."

While we don't have the exact recipe Coolidge's mother used, a pork apple pie recipe submitted to the Fourth Annual Brooklyn Pie Contest is a good example of how to mix sweet with savory. At first glance, the recipe is actually pretty similar to a standard apple pie, calling for thinly sliced apples, sugar, and cinnamon. However, it also includes the addition of about 25 thin slices of salt pork and 3 tablespoons of reserved salt pork fat (via Little Bitty Pretty One). Although people did tend to eat lots of dishes in the past that may seem strange to us today, President Coolidge's palate was considered a bit odd even back then. "The Presidents' Cookbook" declared President Coolidge to have "had more odd ideas about food than perhaps any other White House resident" (via Food Timeline).