from Chef Keri Moser of IvyWild, Sewanee, Tennessee
2 cups arugula, washed and patted dry
2 cups pickled peaches (recipe follows)
4 slices or muffins of Southern country cornbread (recipe follows)
4 ounces thinly sliced bacon or country ham (Chef Moser makes her own or uses Broadbent’s from Kuttawa, Kentucky)
Sorghum to drizzle on cornbread and plate
Salted butter for the hot cornbread
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
½ teaspoon cloves
1 tablespoon whole allspice
1 teaspoon juniper berries
⅓ star of anise
3 cups white vinegar
3 cups water
3 cups sugar
5 pounds peeled peaches (sliced, slivered, diced, or chopped)
1 large egg
1¾ cup buttermilk
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 cups cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Salted butter for the pan
Place vegetable oil in heavy-bottomed pot over high heat.
Add cloves, allspice, juniper berries, and anise. Toast just until smoking, then immediately add white vinegar, water, and sugar. Bring to a boil.
Pour over the peeled peaches.
Vacuum seal on medium pressure. Store in the refrigerator a minimum of 24 hours before opening. Strain peaches before using.
Yield: 6 32-ounce vacuum bags of pickled peaches
Southern Country Cornbread
Beat egg thoroughly. Mix in buttermilk and oil.
Fold in remaining ingredients just until moist. Let rest 15−20 minutes.
Heat oven to 450 degrees.
Heavily butter a 4×8-inch bread pan or tray of 24 muffin cups. Place pan in oven for 7−8 minutes until very hot.
Drop batter into hot pan. Bake until golden brown (times vary widely based on the size of the pan, but one loaf should take 20–25 minutes and muffins should take 12–15 minutes).
Yield: 1 loaf or 24 muffins
Peaches and Pork Assembly
Toss the arugula with the pickled peaches and arrange at both ends of plate.
Place cornbread in center topped with butter. Add slices of bacon or country ham.