The Food and Wine Hedonist

leave your inhibitions at the door

Roasted Shishito Peppers

It looks like Shishito peppers are the new Brussels sprouts or kale.   You know, that new food trend that everyone’s talking about and is appearing on menus everywhere.   I’ve seen them at a few restaurants here in Ann Arbor, which means that they more than likely have been super popular for two or three years on the coasts.

shishito 3


They probably won’t be as ubiquitous as kale or sprouts which are served in a million and three different ways.   That’s because there’s only one way to serve them and that’s roasted whole.   I suppose pan-fried is technically another way, but it’s still the same concept – a little oil, super hot heat, served whole.

These peppers are so unbelievably awesome that I can down dozens in just a few short minutes. They’re so thin-skinned that they almost melt in your mouth and roasting them brings out smoky flavors with only a hint of that vegetal/herbaceous flavor other peppers have.   As far as heat goes, they’re more sweet and mild.   I’ve read several articles that say that one out of every fifteen are super hot, but I’ve yet to encounter any of those.

I first had them last year and looked all over to find them in stores. I heard that the Asian markets have them, but I never had any luck on my repeated visits. This past winter I bought some seeds on Amazon and started them indoors. When summer rolled around, I planted eight seedlings into my garden.

Now I’m rolling in them.  A very good problem to have.


Roasted Shishito Peppers

It feels really silly even writing this as a regular recipe.   There are three easy steps and only three ingredients, with the quantity of peppers being  “all of them.”    Trust me, you won’t have any leftovers.   Padron peppers are very, very similar and substituted here.   Then again, you’ll probably run into Shishitos before you do Padrons.

Two of the restaurants that serve them here in town – Mani Osteria and Bigalora – have mega-hot pizza ovens and can have these out to the table in less than five minutes.   Luckily, you don’t need one of those.

– As many Shishito peppers you can get your grubby hands on
– Olive oil
– Kosher or Pink Himalayan salt

1 – Stick a cast iron pan or cookie sheet under a broiler as it heats up. You want the pan to be super hot so that you don’t have to flip the peppers.
2 – Toss the peppers in some olive oil and place on hot pan in single layer.

shishito 1

shishito 2

3 – Remove from oven when charred (about 3-4 minutes) and sprinkle with salt

See? Wasn’t that ridiculously easy?




About thefoodandwinehedonist

I don't know everything about the world of food and wine, but I'm not going to let a small detail like that stop me from blogging about it.

12 comments on “Roasted Shishito Peppers

  1. elizabeth
    August 27, 2015

    I have a box of Padrones that I really, really need to fry up and make and damnit, I’m going to do it tonight. I grew some last year on our balcony and I think the mistake I made was that I put them right next to my serrano pepper plant, so some cross-pollination happened and my padrones were SUPER SPICY. As in I-can-see-time spicy. So until I have more growing space I think I’m going to stick to buying them when I find them.

    • thefoodandwinehedonist
      August 27, 2015

      I’m a fan of that level of heat, but I suppose munching away at whole peppers like that might be a little much.. Have you compared Padrones to shishitos? I had them last week at a tapas place here and to me they were exactly the same. Of course, there’s a strong chance this particular place thought they were Padrones.

      • elizabeth
        August 27, 2015

        That was exactly the problem–if they were meant to add heat to a dish, they would have been great but to eat whole it was painful.

        I had shishito peppers at Boqueria Flatiron years ago, and they weren’t all that different to the Padrones that I’d either get from Whole Foods or when we’ve been in Barcelona–I think there we had maybe one or two spicy peppers ever.

  2. Michelle Williams
    August 27, 2015

    Easy and delicious. It’s Hatch chili season in Texas right now. Whole Foods and Central Market are roasting them like crazy. So yummy. Thanks for sharing.

  3. SAHMmelier
    August 27, 2015

    I add lemon and shaved parm to mine. Divine!

  4. Josh
    August 27, 2015

    What benefit is there to coating them in oil? When I roast poblanos or bell peppers, I just put them directly over the charcoal chimney or under the broiler. Usually turn out great.

    • thefoodandwinehedonist
      August 27, 2015

      I think – but aren’t sure – it’s because they’re thin and delicate. It’ll speed the browning without killing them.

  5. A Famished Foodie
    August 28, 2015

    I see these all the time, but have never tried them. It’s just one of those things I feel like I don’t have to order- much like a kale salad- but you may have changed my mind…maybe.

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This entry was posted on August 27, 2015 by in Ann Arbor, Cooking, Dining and tagged , , , , , , .
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