Another reason to love peach season.

By Stacey Ballis
August 07, 2019
Vesna Jovanovic / EyeEm/Getty Images

I have a tendency to be overly ambitious (read: gluttonous) at the market. Whether it is a basket of fresh herbs or bushels worth of fruit, I am genetically incapable of buying a rational amount of delicious things.

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This is especially true of things that are seasonal, limited, and favorites of mine. Let me loose at the farmer’s market in prime stone-fruit season and I will come home with peaches and plums in every size, shape, and color of the rainbow. This is all despite the fact that I know these delicate beauties will be perfect for about 11 minutes, and then bruise and rot at a speed usually reserved for avocados. Kesar mango season? I buy them by the box, and then it’s a race to eat them before they wrinkle and mold.

Peach season isn’t usually that big a deal in Chicago, since no one ever wrote a love song to Illinois peaches. But peaches are a very big deal in Kentucky, where my husband is from, and if we go to Kentucky during peach season, you can bet that we are coming home with a couple of pecks. And while I love me some peach jam, we are only two people, and with both of us watching our carbs, filling the larder with jars of sweets isn’t ideal.

Which is how I came up with this peach ketchup.

Stacey Ballis

Sweet, sour, salty, and a bit spicy, with some tomato to prevent it from going too fruity, this condiment is delicious wherever you would put regular ketchup. It is especially good on sweet potato fries, pork dishes, and chicken wings, and could be the base of a really fantastic barbecue sauce.

Stacey Ballis

Because I am lazy, I just dump all the ingredients in my blender, not bothering to peel either tomatoes or peaches, and then I’ll just cook down the puree until I get the texture I like. I prefer a thicker ketchup, which goes against my lack of patience, but it is worth it to really let the mixture reduce. It will also thicken a bit as it cools, but you can take it to whatever consistency you prefer. Swap out peaches for plums if you want to roll that way—no one will tell.

Get the Recipe: Peach Ketchup

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