[ PALISADE PEACH SALSA ]
Palisade, on the Western Slope of Colorado, boasts some of the best peaches in the country. But, if you can't get them from there, use any high-quality, organic ones you can find. The key here is the peach needs to be the star, and the tomato, in the supporting role.
2 ripe peaches, flesh only - no skin
2 medium tomatoes, seeded - Heirloom, all the better
1/2 large Jalapeno pepper
1/2 red onion
Peach juice from 1/2 a juicy peach
Salt & pepper to taste
You want your dice on the peaches and tomatoes to be similar - medium, with the dice on the Jalapeno and red onion, fine. The peach juice is important, adding additional sweetness, moisture and peachiness. The salt, and the acid from the tomato, helps balance it. Make this when both tomatoes and peaches are at their height of season. Makes a pint. Better yet, make a double batch, and mix the rest for gazpacho!
[ PEACH GAZPACHO ]
Use all of the ingredients listed above, plus 2 more peaches and 2 more tomatoes, 1 cucumber, 1 orange pepper and the juice from 1/2 an orange. If you can get your hands on some Savory Spice Shop Homestead seasoning, add a teaspoon of that too [if not, add a clove of fresh garlic, and a pinch of paprika]. Combine in a blender. Makes 1 quart. Eat. Be happy.
[ PRESERVED LEMONS ]
Ah, preserved lemons. The beautiful Moroccan and Middle Eastern delight that will elevate your dishes in a sunny, special manner. We continually have at least two jars of these on hand, and often three, so we can always grab one to take as a hostess gift, or give as thanks to a friend for some food gift they’ve lovingly given. And one to cook with, naturally. When they’re ready to use, remove the pith, and micro-dice them, adding to all kinds of things from Israeli couscous to homemade salad dressings to store-bought blueberry jam. They are a strong flavor, and that’s why micro-dicing is encouraged. You want that flavor spread through your dish, dressing or jam, but not pieces too big that it overpowers. The exception is when you make a chicken or lamb tagine - and for presentation, it looks best with whole slices - while that flavor seeps into the dish, instead of the wheel of lemon actually being eaten.
This is really more of a method, than recipe.
Depending on the size of your container, use as many lemons as needed. You definitely want organic, because all of the love here is in the peel. Cut them on the stem end 3/4 way down in an X. Fill the bottom of the container with kosher salt, about 1/4 of the way up. Then as you cut each lemon, sprinkle kosher salt inside as well, after you squeeze some juice from it into the container. The thing is - the citrus juice which you squeeze out in this process, and which the salt also helps to extract - is what works to soften the peels, which is what you ultimately will use.
Add another tablespoon of kosher salt on top as a layer, plus a clove or two, and a cinnamon stick pressed into middle of container, top to bottom and put in fridge to let it do its thing. Every once in a while, press lemons with back of a spoon to allow more juice to fill container. You can also turn upside down for part of the time, to get more juice / acid on the ones in the top of the container. Let sit in refrigerator for at least 2-3 weeks.
This method can also be used to preserve clementines.
[ BACON CHOCOLATE CAKE (yes, you read that right) ]
1 ¼ c Unbleached flour
½ c Coffee Flour
1 c Milk, 2%
2 c Natural sugar
1 ½ t Fine salt
4 oz Good quality 66% chocolate [we used TCHO]
1 ½ t Baking powder
½ c Good quality brewed coffee [we used NOVO]
½ c Blackberry puree
2 t Savory Spice Shop coffee extract
1 lb Tender Belly Bacon [don’t substitute - you want their special spice rub for flavor]
- Cook bacon to crisp in microwave or oven.
- Mix all other ingredients together while bacon cooks.
- Let bacon cool, then tear in pieces into batter.
- Bake at 350* for 30 minutes uncovered, then 20 minutes covered.
- Garnish with two pieces of just crisp bacon, cut into 6 pieces, piled in the middle.
- You could frost this, but we didn’t want anything else getting in the way of the bacon flavor.
- 1 generously high 9” round.
[ RAMP PISTOU ]
Pistou is a Provencal version of pesto, made without nuts.
The wonderful Blackberry Farm in Tennessee pickles ramps, so you can get them year-round.
Ramp season is upon us, and pickled or fresh, it’s a great time to make this.
23.25 oz ramps [this doesn’t have to be precise; if you buy fresh, just estimate and if you buy the jars, it’s 3 jars]
1/4 c Pecorino Romano cheese
1/4 c Parmesan Reggiano cheese
1 diced preserved lemon [be sure all pith and seeds are removed]
T dried parsley [if using fresh, 3T]
t lemon juice
t agave to taste
Extra virgin olive oil to consistency
Salt + pepper to taste
- Mix ingredients together in food processor.
- Drizzle in olive oil until you get consistency you want.
Note: If you do use pickled ramps, rinse completely before adding to processor; save pickling juice for Bloody Marys! We tossed it with pasta, but it would also be beautiful on toasts, or as a dip too.