We have a friend that we have known for almost 15 years, Dawn Morse. She was telling me that she was going to go pick peaches this past weekend. I said to myself “Self, that sounds pretty interesting and fun. What can I do with peaches?” Dawn said she was going to make salsa, and if you know Dawn she is very competitive. So of course on the way there the conversation turns into a peach salsa contest. Immediately I begin to call people and do research. I was a little nervous about the amount of jalapeños in this recipe. However, after canning it did not turn out hot. In fact, Dawn’s was hotter than mine. So if you like your salsa with some heat, keep the jalapeño seeds in the recipe. I wanted the salsa to be used in several different scenarios other than with chips. I wanted to use this on fish and chicken dishes as well. The key to the texture of the salsa is the fine chopping and trust me, there is a lot of chopping.
First you have to go out and hand select every peach you put in the salsa. I took a little monkey to scale the peach trees for me.
After you have chopped all the ingredients above, get a nice cooking pot and add all the ingredients into the pot.
Here is my biggest advice that I can offer to you, when you are chopping the jalapenos and habanero….where gloves! Then dispose of them after you cut and add to pot.
Really concentrate on your knife skills here folks, it is about consistency in texture.
When you cut your peaches, depending on what type of peach you use, you will have to cut around the pit. These are not the canning Freestone peaches, so the pit is a little harder to remove. So I cut around the pit the best I can. Make sure to peel the skins off first.
Bring pot to a boil, while stirring often. Do not let the vegetables caramelize at the bottom, or burn. Keep stirring. Reduce to a medium heat, and continue to cook for about 15 minutes. Take a ladle and spoon into clean canning jars leaving 1/2 head spacing to the top of the jar DO NOT OVER FILL. Take the tin lids and boil them in the water. Clean the top of the jars. Remove the lids from hot water and seat them onto the jar, and put the canning ring hand tight. Do not over tighten, just a little hand tight. Get your canning pot, and add enough water to cover the jars by two inches. Bring to a boil. Once the water is boiling, begin timer for 10 minutes. Once 10 minutes is up, let sit in water for 5 minutes then remove to a dry towel on counter and listen for the jars to pop. Check with your finger by pushing on them after 10 minutes. If they are lids are not seated correctly they will not be hard. They will flex and pop, making a funny sound. Put that jar in your fridge and eat within the week. This happened because the top of the jar was not cleaned with a towel or you had debris in between lid and jar.
Repeat the process until all of your cans are done. This is great salsa for chips, it has color and the texture is perfect. It does not have to much of a heat bite, it is slow and sweet.
I seared some halibut as a test, kept the fish in the pan and poured the Sweet Heat Peach Salsa on it. Then put it in the oven to finish at 350 degrees for 5 minutes. It was delicious.
I would use this on chicken as well. It has a lot of components and full of flavor. I hope you get out and pick some peaches. I like giving these away for Christmas, nothing like telling someone you love them like making something fresh like that.
Thank you Dawn for taking us on our first guided peach hunting trip, and for being competitive enough to make me get out of my comfort zone to make something from the garden. I am usually looking for meat and fish. For the record Dawn did beat me in the salsa chip contest, hers had more heat bite. Which even I agreed that I liked hers more for chips.
The Hunting Chef