Charred shishito peppers come with a hint of heat, sweet pecans, and a salty aioli sauce to complete this addictive side that has all the flavors covered.
By Sarah Mason
Shishito peppers are perfect. Just the right amount of heat, charred and flavorful and soooo yum. The only problem is that they’re impossible to get ahold of. Well, not impossible. Not like you can’t do it. You can. Do you have a Fresh Market? Whole Foods? Central Market? I’d call first. That’s what I did. And good thing because the lady was like, “Shishitos? Good luck. We run out fast.”
These peppers. I’m freaking. And I’m soooo not a spicy food person. Are you? I’m not. I prefer my vegetables to be sweet and cold as opposed to fired and hot. It’s why I’m not nutty over smoked jalapeños. Well, not usually. Except for that one time we wrapped them in bacon and stuffed them with goat’s cheese (find that amazing recipe here).
Anyway, these AREN’T jalapeños. Not spicy. Some hardly have any heat at all. Plus, they’re drenched in sesame oil and miso!
Have you used miso before? Huge fan. I’ve had miso soup, but I kind of feel like that’s cheating. This is different. Again, I had to hunt for the stuff but it was totally worth it. The miso dip is slightly sweet and lovely and very miso-y. You know. The main ingredient and such. But BOY does it taste awesome with the peppers! The love story is now a love triangle.
Oh oh! But there’s more. How is it that we haven’t yet talked about the pecans?! We’re roasting pecans. In sugar. Yes. The idea came from one of our shishito pepper restaurant adventures. How genius! The crunchy little pecans add just the right amount of sweetness. Total love boat.
Now what should you server these delicious peppers with? How about a Jerk-Spiced Burger with Pineapple or a Smoked Pulled Pork Sandwich topped with Fried Pickles.
- 2 pounds whole shishito peppers
- Olive oil (for brushing)
- Sesame oil (for brushing)
- Salt, to taste
- 2 tablespoons white miso paste
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon lower-sodium soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon Sriracha
- ⅛ teaspoon sugar
- 1 large pasteurized egg yolk
- 1 small garlic clove
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup canola oil
- 1 egg white
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 pound pecan halves
- 1 cup white sugar
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Heat oven to 250F. Like a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Whisk egg white and water in a bowl until frothy and foamy. Add pecans; toss to coat.
- In a separate bowl, mix together sugar, salt and cinnamon. Add pecans ("drained" of excess wetness) and toss to coat. Line pecans on baking sheet; bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Combine all miso ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth.
- Make the shishito peppers: There are lots of ways to cook shishito peppers. We used a wok on our Big Green Egg smoker. However, grilling instructions are included below.
- Heat wok over Big Green Egg on high heat. Add olive oil and sesame oil. When oil is heated, add the shishito peppers and salt. Cook, stirring often, until peppers are blistered and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
- (Alternatively, brush shishito peppers with olive oil, salt and sesame oil and grill over medium high heat - about 400F. Grill uncovered, turning occasionally until they start to char, about 8 minutes).
- Toss shishito peppers with the sugared pecans and a small amount of miso aioli. Transfer remaining aioli to a bowl to use for dipping. Serve warm.