Peacher? I Hardly Knew Her! Peach, Bacon and Onion Salad With Buttermilk Dressing

Just lean back, close your eyes, and go to your happy place.

The place where sweet crispy pork, highlighted by brown sugar and cayenne, flirts with warm, firm, just-sweet-enough peaches. Vidalia onions add crunch without acrid bite, then ahhhh, the creamy, herb-fresh dressing poured overtop.

The first flavours are reminscent of that unbeatable pork-apple combo but with a lick of stylish sophistication and down-home Southern charm.

I picked up a baguette to pair with this light and savoury summer salad, but entirely forgot about it, along with everything else–What’s my name? Where am I? Oh yes, food HEAVEN.

I enjoy food. A lot. I like a lot of different tastes and flavours. And there are many times I get close to reaching flavour nirvana. But I might have to reserve a special place on the blog for those extra special moments, like this one, where I see (food) God. It’s rare. It’s fleeting. It’s indescribable.

And it’s easier than you think. This recipe calls for lots of time spent baking bacon and grilling onions in the oven. To save time and to prevent my warm house from overheating, I prepared the bacon in a frying pan and used my trusty grill for the onions and peaches. Between prep and cooking time, I’d say 30 minutes is all you need. To reach food heaven? It’s worth it to me.

I served this little gem with a crisp pinot grigio and bread (that remained uneaten). Just right for a hot summer’s night.

This dish from my Summer Salad Series really threw me for a loop. I will be back tomorrow with my picks for next week. In the meantime, hit the local fruit market and get yourself some juicy peaches. That’s an order!

Grilled Peach, Onion and Bacon with Buttermilk Dressing

via Food & Wine Magazine–link to recipe here

The secret to this salad is using big, juicy sweet onions like the Vidalias that Linton Hopkins favors, which get nicely charred on…

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup buttermilk

2 tablespoons chopped mint

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

2 tablespoons snipped chives

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar


Freshly ground pepper

1 pound thick-sliced bacon

1/4 cup light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

3 pounds Vidalia or other sweet onions, cut into 1-inch-thick slabs

Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing

4 large ripe peaches, cut into 1/2-inch wedges

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°. In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the sour cream, buttermilk, mint, parsley, chives and vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate.
  2. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the bacon slices on the sheet in a single layer and sprinkle with the brown sugar and cayenne. Bake for about 25 minutes, until caramelized (the bacon will crisp as it cools). Let cool, then cut the bacon into bite-size pieces.
  3. Meanwhile, light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Brush the onions with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderate heat, turning occasionally, until softened and browned, 10 minutes. Separate the onions into rings. Brush the peaches with olive oil and grill over moderately high heat until tender, 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the onions with the peaches and bacon. Add the buttermilk dressing and toss to coat. Serve right away.

Comments (11)

  • What a GREAT combination of flavors – love the idea of the sweet peach with the salty bacon. What a perfect summery dish – Yum!

    • What I didn’t mention in the post was how good the bacon was on its own! Dusted with brown sugar and cayenne, you could definitely re-use this in a new way–or all by itself.

  • Your photos are gorgeous my friend, this looks tempting and delicious 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  • Are you kidding me? If you only knew how hungry I am….WOW! Melanie, this is a wonderful combination of flavors, and your pictures are driving me crazy! (In a good way 🙂 I’m dying over here….this looks SO good!

    • Thanks Sarah. I was looking forward to this salad but it blew me away. A must try. Let me know if you do and we can compare notes.

  • Ooh looks tasty, except for the peach part, I just don’t like peaches 🙁

    • How controversial! You’re the first anti-peach person I’ve met. Hmmm, I wonder what else you could add instead…maybe pineapple? Mango? They do well on the grill and would go well with bacon and onion I think.

  • […] This salad, for one! Peach, Bacon, and Onion salad with Buttermilk Dressing […]

  • I can hardly wait for the peaches to come in season so I can make this! Vidalia onions are readily available in the southern US and grilled would be amazing. I’m pretty sure my bacon-loving husband will be on board with this beautiful salad.
    Allison @ Main St. Cuisine recently posted..Corned Beef HashMy Profile


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