Thursday, July 10, 2014

Peachy Blueberry Salsa with Grilled Pork Chops – to celebrate fresh peach season

Fresh southern peaches have arrived in our markets and that’s always a reason to celebrate at our house. Peach season is relatively short, so we try to incorporate fresh peaches into as many dishes as we possibly can. The recipe I’ve featured today is, for me, all about the fresh peaches.

Sweet juicy peaches combined with fresh blueberries and hot pepper jelly make for a sweet and spicy condiment for grilled bone-in pork chops, but would also be excellent on a cheese tray spooned over goat cheese or creamy Brie and served with a crisp white wine.

You've probably noticed that I use spicy fruit salsas often in my kitchen and although I've talked about it in the past here, I thought new readers might be interested in how that came about. I fell head-over-heels in love with spicy fruit salsas  when they were served with a fresh tuna roll at Little Moir's Food Shack, a very popular fish joint in Jupiter, Florida. I had never tasted anything like it before - the salsas were sweet, spicy, and hot all at the same time and burst in my mouth with fabulous new-to-me flavors. Mike Moir, the owner of The Food Shack, says his food is "a simple twist of taste," but I call it falling in love with incredible flavor combinations. Spicy, sweet, and hot salsas are a "party in your mouth." I hope you'll fall in love with them as much as I have.

I’ve broken down today's recipe into three parts – peachy blueberry salsa, grilled pork chops, and the all-purpose pork brine because all three recipes are worthy of standing-alone.

But first the peachy blueberry salsa – my favorite part of this meal of course.

Peachy Blueberry Salsa
Adapted from Southern Living, makes about 3 cups
Printable Recipe

1 large peach, or 2 small peaches
1 ½ cups fresh blueberries
2 tablespoons hot pepper jelly (I used red)
1 tablespoon olive oil
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 small shallot, finely chopped
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Peel and dice one large or two small peaches. Coarsely chop half of the blueberries and leave the remainder whole. Set aside with the diced peaches. Combine the hot pepper jelly, olive oil, zest and juice of 1 lime in a large bowl and mix well. Add the peaches, blueberries and remaining ingredients and stir carefully. Serve immediately or cover and chill up to 24 hours. Best in my opinion served immediately. Salsa is perfect as a condiment for grilled pork chops or chicken and also excellent on a cheese tray with goat cheese or Brie.

Grilled Pork Chops with Peachy Blueberry Salsa
Adapted from Southern Living – serves 4
Printable Recipe

4 - 1 ½” thick bone-in pork chops (about 3 ¼ pounds total)
All purpose pork brine, recipe below
1 tablespoon oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peachy Blueberry salsa, recipe above

Place chops and brine in a large zip-lock plastic freezer bag and chill for 8 hours. It’s smart to place the freezer bag in a shallow dish to prevent spills.

Remove the chops from the brine and discard brine. Let pork come to room temperature, about 30 minutes, and pat dry. Light one side of the grill, heating to 350 to 400 degrees F (medium-high), leaving the other side unlit. Brush pork chops with the oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place pork over lit side and grill, covered with grill lid, for 4 minutes on each side. Transfer to unlit side and grill, covered with grill lid, 8 to 10 minutes on each side or until meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 150 degrees F. Remove from heat and let stand 4 minutes. Arrange pork on serving platter and top with peachy blueberry salsa. Serve right away.

All-Purpose Pork Brine
Adapted from Southern Living, yield 1 ½ quarts
Printable Recipe

1 ½ quarts hot water
3 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons freshly ground (coarse) black pepper
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 bay leaves
½ of large lemon, sliced

Stir together all of the ingredients in a large stockpot until salt and sugar dissolve. Let stand 1 hour.

This will be shared with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farm, Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday, and Foodie Friday at Simple Recipes.    
Have a great weekend everyone.


  1. We wait all year for sun ripened peaches. Loving this fresh recipe Sam.

  2. I remember a summer in North Carolina where I had my first southern peach. It was a meal! Now I wait for the fresh Iowa peaches because they haven't sat in trucks all day. My blueberry bushes are bursting - and I will be doing this. I'm also a sucker for a good fruit salsa!

  3. I love all of the fresh fruit that is available in the summer! This salsa sounds wonderful....we are getting wonderful peaches in our veggie box right now. I can see this in my future!

  4. The combination of blueberry and peach sounds wonderful Sam!

  5. We eat lots of peaches these days too. This looks like a terrific summer meal, Sam.

  6. Sam, these look delicious. I heard a chef say you should try to hit all the flavor buds, sweet, salty, spicy, and a little acid. Looks like you managed all and it is gorgeous too.


  7. This sounds delicious but seldom do I see blueberries here. Hope you are well Diane

  8. How beautiful - peaches and blueberries - don't you just LOVE summer!! the recipe looks fabulous!

  9. Very nice Sam, I love fruit salsas too, they're just fun! Your meal looks much better than the cheese and crackers I had tonight:@)

  10. I have to make all 3!
    We just bought perfect timing..I know I will love the salsa and the brine sounds great!

  11. Sam, Great photos! Laurie would love this entree... I've never been a big fan of sweet with my meat...but it's so appealing to look at that I'd give it a try. I like that fruit and I like the meat so I probably just need to get out of my rut! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  12. I love fruit salsas especially this combination, they bring so much flavor to a dish. Summer fruit is the best!

  13. Beautiful presentation Sam. Love all three recipes.

  14. This sounds delicious Sam and great shots as always. You've opened up an entirely new flavor experience for me with your sweet & savory fruit concoctions, beginning with the first blogger party.

  15. Never have brined pork chops! Am I completely out of touch? :)
    Love peaches. I remember driving through Georgia years ago with my daughter and we bought some at a roadside stand. Ate every single one, juice all over us, the steering wheel....everything! So worth the mess. What a marvelous salsa, Sam.

  16. Delicious! We have another week or so to wait for peaches. I have pork chops brining right now. Still trying to decide how to do them.


  17. They look too good to be true and oh so yummy! I hope to try out this recipe with my home grown blueberries. Thanks, Sam.

  18. Looks so delicious - a taste of summer! Wish we had more access to the Southern peaches - they really are the real deal. However, I am about to head out to pick blueberries which are always gorgeous on Long Island.

  19. You're right Sam, fruit salsas are so delicious! Using summer peaches brings extra sweetness and super-freshness! Perfect for topping those pork chops! Hope your summer has been enjoyable!

  20. We've got a couple weeks to go before we see our Colorado Peaches ... and every year I love all the peach posts from warmer states to whet my appetite.

  21. I have both of these fruits nice and ripe... just need a few pork chops. Pinning this thanks for bringing it by foodie friday.

  22. I love spicy fruit salsas -- I 'invented' one to include in my first mystery -- involving grilled fresh pineapple, jalapenos, red onions, and cilantro if I remember correctly.

  23. I have blueberries and peaches, and we are about to go to the meat market to get something for dinner. I think I know what it will be.

  24. That salsa sounds just fantastic Sam. I am so thrilled that delicious fresh peaches have arrived and this is a wonderful way to use them. I love the sweet and spicy flavors you've got going here.

  25. You make the most beautiful use of fruit in your cooking, Sam! So delicious for a summer pork chop dinner.

  26. What a wonderful recipe,Sam! I also love spicy fruit chutney sauces served with pork and fish. I was recently in DC and the Washington Post Food section had an article about a new continent being marketed called "Chups," that is a more purred version of just that. Personally, I prefer the fruits to be chunk and fresh, like your sauce. Colorado grown Palisade peaches are popular here.

  27. Hi Sam,
    What a great looking meal, I would just love your Peachy Blueberry Salsa. We have fresh peaches right now and they are wonderful. I can't wait to try this Salsa.

    Thank you so much for sharing your awesome post with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you are having a great week and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

  28. The colors and flavors for these grilled chops are spot on perfect!

  29. Dear Sam, The salsa sounds delicious!! The freshness of the salsa goes perfect with the pork chops. Blessings dear. Catherine

  30. I made this salsa tonight with fresh local New Jersey peaches and served with pork tenderloin. It was every bit as delicious as it looks. Thanks for the great recipe.


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