Smoky Peach Salsa

It is time for me to come clean with you. Like Mr. B and his Triple Ginger cookies, I have a bit of an addiction. It is a rather strange addiction, containing none of the typical substances such as chocolate, caffeine, or alcohol. You see, I am addicted to peach salsa. And not just any peach salsa. Oh no. Quite specifically Trader Joe’s Smoky Peach Salsa.

Smoky Peach Salsa

Now I’ve tried just about every brand of peach salsa out there, because, as you may recall, the nearest Trader Joe’s is over 300 miles away. Sadly no other peach salsa has satisfied my craving, and I’ve resorted to begging my mother for regular shipments. If you work at a Trader Joe’s and wonder why that nice red haired woman is buying enough Triple Ginger cookies and Smoky Peach salsa to feed a small village, well now you know.

Mr. B shares my love for this peach salsa and whenever we open a jar it quickly turns into a feeding frenzy with each of us trying ensure we get our “half” of the salsa. On the rare occasion that I cannot wait for him to get home from work before popping one open, it takes every ounce of restraint to keep from eating the entire jar and hiding the evidence at the bottom of the trash can. I’ve only failed once or twice- sorry honey!

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When we purchased a big box of the perfect peaches I wrote about last year, I knew it was time to see if I could figure out how to duplicate the salsa at home. Using the ingredient listing on the back of the salsa jar as my guide, I set forth to replicate the taste and texture of the salsa. This has to be one of my favorite recipe recreations to date. A jar of the Trader Joe’s salsa sat open on the counter while a big pan of salsa bubbled on the stove, and we happily tested and tasted our way through the recipe, completely ruining any appetite for dinner!

Making the Peach Salsa

The final result was a large batch of mouth watering peach salsa. The combination of sweet peaches, smoky chipotle, and tangy lemon juice is very satisfying. While we came very close to replicating the Trader Joe’s salsa, I think a few more batches are needed to achieve perfection. (Oh darn!) If you enjoy a sweet and spicy salsa please give this a try. And if you find it addictive, well, don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Smoky Peach Salsa (Printable Recipe)
Makes Approximately 6 cups (This is a lot of salsa and the recipe could be halved)

This recipe is very close to the Trader Joe’s version. It creates a sweet, mildly spicy salsa with a delicious tang. The next time we make it I may try adding a few jalapeno peppers or another chipotle pepper into the mix to give a bit more heat. Please feel free to play around with the recipe and tweak it to meet your personal salsa cravings!

Ingredients:
11-12 peaches, peeled and pitted
3 1/4 cups water (from peeling peaches)
2 6-ounce cans of tomato paste
2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1/2 cup cilantro, leaves and stems
1 Tablespoon grapeseed oil (or other neutral flavored oil)
1 large onion, diced (about 2 cups)
1 green bell pepper
1 1/2 lemons, juiced
2 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
4 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
3 habanero peppers
1 lime, juiced
2 small tomatoes, finely diced (about 1 cup)

Directions:
Place water and five pitted peaches into a blender. Add tomato paste, chipotle peppers, and cilantro. Blend until mixture is smooth.

In a large saucepan, saute onion and bell pepper until softened. Add in blended mixture. Add in lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, granulated garlic and salt. Cut a small slit into the habenero peppers and add them to the pot. Cook for 30-40 minutes on a very low simmer. Dice remaining peaches into 1/4 inch cubes, and add them to the pot along with the lime juice and tomatoes.

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