Atz Kilcher

From the blog

Wilderness Breakfast with Atz Kilcher

Here’s a transcript of the first half of the video. Hope you enjoy, and let me know what you think in the comments below. Thanks for stopping by.

Well, here we are here at the head of Kachemak bay next to the Sheep River in the old Bruce Willard line Shack. It’s that time of day for breakfast so I’m going to do up my favorite wilderness breakfast –  Homegrown red banana potatoes, going to cut up a little apple, going to put in some onions. We got a few select spices here too. First we gotta find find the olive oil, which is probably Frozen, but we’ll squeeze out a little bit.

Oh yeah, nothing like a little frozen olive oil to get things started.

So my Mama, being from the old country, she cooked a lot with fruit. She use dried apples, dried pears, because back in the early days in Homer, Alaska about all you got was dried fruit. In the old country they used fruit a lot too. So I still like to cook with fruit. Put a few apples in with my potatoes and onions and people say “What is that good taste?” And I say “Can’t tell you man!” If you put in a few onions and a few apples in with the potatoes and people will say “Dude what is that flavor?” I haven’t found anybody yet who didn’t like apples, onions, and taters for a wilderness breakfast.

We got the purple vibe going on here.

I don’t like to talk about it a lot but it has to do with Vietnam. I actually learned how to cook over there. I was a soldier back in the sixties in Vietnam and I learned how to cook.  Kept the soldiers fed. Beautiful place to be, in the kitchen. Making soldiers happy. And you know, I’ve loved cooking ever since; something about food makes people happy.

Now you might ask “For this special wilderness breakfast when is the right time to put in the apples?”

I’m glad you asked that question because I will tell you. Most Cooks try to make things look very complicated, like there’s a mystery and a secret. Well, you add the apples whenever you want! Put them in at the last minute and they will be raw. Put them in at the very beginning and they will be caramelized. Put them in half way through, and they will be just right!

The main thing about cooking is you got to have fun doing it. And every time you gotta do it a little bit different. Like this time I sliced the onions up with all the peelings on there just because it was more fun to do it that way.

How big should you put the pieces of onion? It don’t matter. When should you put the onion in? Well, right about now. It’s all a matter of if you like your onions well done, medium done, or  kind al dente. I like my onions cooked, and my potatoes cooked. I don’t  like to put in my apples till kind of towards the end so they are a little chewy – you’ll bite into them and say oh!

My secret to good cooking is to always under spice. You want a little spices, but let the people doctor up their own you know? Let the people add their own pepper, their own salt, whatever. I’m sure by now you’ve noticed I’m cooking over a propane fire. Well, I’ve spent many a day cooking over that wood stove fire right there. But it takes a lot of wood, a lot of heat and I think I’m conserving by brining up a little tank of propane and cooking with that. Save wood, save the trees and that’s kind of the way I do it.

We’ll have eggs, taters, and I think we’ll be in pretty good shape.

Then I introduced Riley, my youngest cooking apprentice here at the wilderness cooking school. He’s three years old, the son of my photographer friend Scott Dickerson.

Hope you enjoy the video.


  1. Love the simplicity of your recipes. I am teaching my 8 year old granddaughter to cook. She loves it!!😃

    1. Love the video..Riley was a great little helper. I’ll have to try the apple next time I make fried potatoes!!
      Thank-you for sharing!

  2. Hello Happy weekend Atz. What a wonderful video, never have thought about putting apples with potatoes! Until now that is. Thank you so much for sharing, we sure do appreciate it. From Alex and Cari in Southern Illinois

  3. That is making my mouth drool. Can’t wait to try it. Hope i can find those potatoes here on Long Island, NY. Thanks Atz

  4. My favorite breakfast – fried potatoes and wild onions – never tried the apples, but I will next time I cook it – we cooked them on a wood cook stove or campfire when outside.

  5. That was great! Riley was a big help. I laughed a bunch of times throughout the video! You singing, Riley talking about the oven mitt (smart kid), and best of all, the “flying mooses”! By the way, thanks for the “smellivision”. And thank you for your service to our country. Miss you all.

  6. Just watched with my son. We will be trying your breakfast idea very soon. Thank you for sharing. Hope to see more of your cooking episodes.

    1. Thanks Mike. Glad you liked it. My photographer friend Scott (Riley’s Dad) was worried it could be too slow paced for people used to watching modern tv. I’m hoping he was wrong. Guess it worked for you!

  7. So enjoyed watching you teach young Riley how to cook you are a good patient teacher bless your soul Atz, Thank you so much for sharing your families life in Alaska it is hard work but all of you make it work love how all of you show us how to live & recycle life alot of lessons your family has help me teach my grandkids when are camping .

    1. Thank you Brenda. Comments like yours mean a lot to us. Sometimes we wonder why we are putting all this effort into making and sharing the shows and then I hear things like this and I know it’s all worth it in the end.

  8. Sounds delish! I also enjoy adding fruit to different dishes, it an unexpected surprise. Ian of the mind that fruit is not used nearly enough in ever day cooking.

  9. That looks like a great bonding moment for the both of you. Chances are Riley will never forget all the things you taught him out at the Willard Cabin.

  10. Atz I absolutely love the video and I will definitely try those potatoes in the morning for breakfast basically that’s how I fix my potatoes and put my eggs over top of them and mix them up I loved the cute little baby boy helping you cook that was precious love watching Alaska the Last Frontier if I can’t be home I always type it and I definitely watch all of the reruns wishing everyone of the kilchers a blessed evening

  11. That was beautiful, Atz! You had a great helper. Riley is so cute. I will have to try your breakfast, it looked so good!

  12. Loved this! I cook breakfast on Sunday mornings. I will be serving your recipe this week! Thanks for sharing.

  13. Oh and one time we were up in Utah and we were visiting friends she had made a macaroni salad all of a sudden I came across a flavor it was soooo good . grapes .green grapes in the macaroni salad!! Boy was it good! I’ll have to try your 🍎

  14. going to try this,never would of thought of the apples. Thank you for sharing your family and way of life. My husband and I never miss it.

  15. That looks yummy!!! Those different ingredients will make an interesting unique flavor!! I MUST try it! What happened to the toast???? Who cooks more, you or Bonnie?????

  16. I swear I could smell this cooking as I was watching the video. Will be trying the apples 🍎 next time I cook potatoes and onion. Have you ever tried this with sweet potatoes? I am wondering how the apples and sweet potatoes would taste together.

  17. Looks very tasty. I will be cooking this soon. Love all you guys. And your little apprentice was a great helper.

  18. Looks good.I cook onion, potatoes and smoke sausage together.I bet apples would be good with that. Makes me hungry watching.

  19. You and your helper are so enjoyable to watch. My parents, who watch the show faithfully, introduced me to it as well and I have come to thoroughly enjoy learning about homesteading life in Alaska. Thank you Sir for sharing your family and recipe with us. I will be trying this myself! Thank you especially for your service, my dad also served in Vietnam. Welcome home Mr. Kilcher.

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