Spicy Peach Chutney
Summer is drawing to a close folks. And no one is sadder about it than me. We’ve had such a great one - trail blazing, pool swimming, creek wading, burger grilling, rose' sipping – I can barely stand to see it fade.
But, school started this week (gasp!) and along with it, the end of the summer festivals, markets and general lassie faire attitude that we roll with throughout these warmer months.
The one saving grace is that this week not only held the start of school, but also the Lafayette Peach Festival, held each year in Old Town Lafayette CO. And what a way to wrap things up! Not only can you get peaches by the cartons, but pies, cobblers, salsas, and about anything else you can make with a peach can be found at this local festival.
And, although it was a hot one, we gathered up our empty baskets and headed over to Public Road in Lafayette on Saturday afternoon to fill them up and get our fair share of peaches.
Once home, we had to figure out what to do with them. We decided on something simple that could be used in a multitude of ways: chutney.
This chutney is wonderful on pork, works well on a grilled cheese sandwich, pairs perfectly with a platter of charcuterie and a block of parmesan cheese, and would go great with any Indian or curry dish. You can spice it up by adding more hot peppers, but as it is written, it gives a nice subtle punch without overpowering the sauce.
I will warn you – because this recipe uses vinegar, it will smell pretty awful while cooking it, but stay with it and don’t panic. The vinegar will cook off and the result will be a lovely thick chutney that you can give as gifts or serve as part of your own dinner party.
Spicy Peach Chutney
- 4 pounds ripe peaches
- 1 ½ cups light brown sugar
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, diced
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh peeled ginger
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 12 cardamom pods, lightly cracked
- 3 fresh hot chile peppers (I used 2 Serrano peppers and 1 habanero pepper)
- Peel, pit, and chop the peaches. (Need help peeling a peach? Learn how to do it here.)
- Combine the brown sugar, vinegar, garlic, ginger, onion and cardamom in a medium cast-iron pot. Simmer over low heat until onion has softened. Add peaches, chilies, and salt and continue to simmer until the peaches are soft and translucent, about an hour.
- Allow the chutney to cool, and transfer it to your storage jars. You may choose to can the chutney, or, put it into pretty glass jars to give as gift.
This recipe is slightly adapted from Grace Parisi’s peach chutney, featured in Food & Wine.