The mighty peach is one of the most popular and emblematic fruits of the South, and there are countless ways to enjoy it beyond the perennial Southern peach pie, from refreshing summertime treats like peach sweet tea and Georgia peach ice cream, to spreads such as peach jalapeño jam, which makes a fantastic companion to savory dishes. You can add peach and goat cheese bruschetta to your picnic menu, or try habañero peach and pineapple glazed chicken skewers to highlight the fruit’s versatility. But there's a particularly saucy peach preparation that talented chefs across the South have sworn by for generations, or at least as long as Mason jars have been around.
Salsa, the traditionally tomato-based condiment/dip that comes in various colors and heat levels, usually comes in one of two popular versions: salsa roja (“red sauce” made with tomatoes) and salsa verde (“green sauce” made with tomatillos). But in the South, another popular style is — what else — peach salsa.
The peaches in this salsa recipe get peeled to remove the fuzzy skin, then diced into small cubes for easy tortilla-chip-dunking. Classic salsa ingredients (cilantro, onion, a squeeze of lime juice, etc.) round out the flavors of this sweet and spicy dip. Be sure to use the ripest peaches you can find: A ripe peach will have a dark yellow-orange color, and will have a slight bit of give when gently squeezed. Aside from that it’s a pretty simple process, so grab enough to juggle and get started making, sharing and enjoying your sweet and tangy creation.
3 ripe peaches
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup diced green bell pepper
1 jalapeño, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1/2 lime
Salt and pepper
Fill a medium-sized stockpot with water and bring to a boil. Drop the peaches into the boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Remove the peaches using a slotted spoon and immediately drop into an ice bath (a bowl filled with equal amounts of water and ice). An ice bath will allow the peaches to cool while also halting the cooking process. Gently peel the peaches with either your hands or a small paring knife. Dice the peaches into small cubes.
Combine the chopped peaches, onion, bell pepper, jalapeño, cilantro and lime juice in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Chill the salsa for about an hour before serving to allow the flavors to marry. If your peach salsa craving demands immediate attention, however, feel free serve this dip with tortilla chips or pita bread right away.