About This Recipe
Note: If you can’t find lemon basil, use regular basil.
- 1 lb (450g) fresh ripe peaches
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 1 habanero pepper, or more, depending on your taste for heat, seeded and cut into thin slivers
- 1 bunch (25 g) fresh lemon basil leaves, divided
- 1 Tbsp coriander seeds, toasted and lightly smashed in a mortar
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) honey
- 1 tsp salt, plus more if needed
Step 1Fill a large bowl with cold water and add a big handful of ice cubes to it. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. While it’s heating, cut an X in the bottom of each peach, just cutting through the skin. When the water is boiling, add the peaches to the water and boil them for 1 minute, then remove them with a spider or slotted spoon to the bowl of ice water. When they’ve cooled a bit, slip the skins off the fruit and break them open, pulling out the pits and discarding them. over a bowl to catch all the juices and fragments, breaking them up with your hands. You want the peach flesh to be in chunks of various sizes.
Step 2When all the peaches are peeled, pitted, and chunked, put half of them in a large saucepan, setting aside the other half. Add the onion, habanero pepper, half of the basil leaves, coriander seeds, cider vinegar, honey, and salt; stir to combine and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook gently, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until the onion has softened and the salsa starts to thicken and reduce a bit, about 30 minutes.
Step 3Add the remaining peach chunks and basil leaves, stir well, and taste for seasoning. Add more salt, honey, or vinegar to balance the flavors; you want it vibrantly sweet, sour, salty, and spicy. Cook for about 10 minutes longer, stirring occasionally to make sure nothing sticks, taste for seasoning a final time, then pour it into jars and let it cool (or can it, if you’re set up to do that).
Step 4Once cool, cover and refrigerate the jars overnight. You can serve this right away, but it’s better the next day. The jars will keep for several weeks in the fridge.
Substitutions: Apricots or nectarines work well, too. If habaneros are too hot for you, use a red serrano or jalapeño instead
Level Up: Make peach vinegar with last year’s peels, and use that instead of apple cider vinegar
Try It With: Avocado toast, a cheese platter, or anything stewy and legume-y
Zero Waste: Make tepache or vinegar with the peach skins, or dehydrate them and use them to flavor black or herbal tea blends