Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Shisito Peppers

If you were in New York City this past weekend, you know how brutally hot it was. If you weren't, I am going to assume that regardless of where you live, you've experienced brutally hot weather at some point. But no, I am not here to talk about the weather, although I find that I always have a lot to say on the topic....not the point. The point is, it was hot hot hot on Saturday and when invited my photographer friend over, I could promise her nothing more than a quick, easy and cold make-your-own salad for dinner.
sauteed shisito peppers
Between our plan making and dinner, I felt a pang of guilt for not putting any effort into our dinner. After a quick peak in my fridge revealed a bag of shisito peppers that I had gotten at the market earlier in the week, I knew I had my solution. For those of you who don't know, shisito peppers are small green peppers that look a bit like jalapenos, but with a ribbed exterior and thinner walls and skin. These peppers are mildly spicy and are very popular in Japanese cooking, especially for tempuras and stir-fries. Anyhow, after spotting these in my fridge I knew that these would be my extra addition to our meal. Yes, the stove would have to go on, but it wouldn't be on for more than 5 minutes and the final result of slightly charred, blistery peppers to munch on was worth the few extra degrees in the kitchen.
market fresh shisito peppers
Well my friend was definitely not disappointed in the peppers either and when I started babbling about shisitos, the market and god knows what else, she came up with a brilliant idea. When I have a 'market find' that I am so excited about, I should write about it here. Yes, the preparation might be super simple and there isn't much cooking involved, but sometimes the fun part of eating and cooking is just sourcing ingredients. So in that vein, I hope you have enjoyed my first of what I hope to be many 'market finds' posts. I can't promise that the recipes will always be exciting, but the ingredients and outcomes certainly are (and will continue to be).
sautee shisito peppers
Shisito Peppers
You may be wondering how these should be eaten, why with your fingers of course. Hold the stem and with your teeth pull the fleshy part off of the stem. If you want to make more just use more peppers, just be certain that your peppers are always in one layer, make several batches if you have to.

2 cups washed shisito peppers
1 hearty glug of olive oil
sea salt for seasoning

Heat up the oil over high heat until shimmering. Add the peppers, letting the sides char and blister. Turn the peppers over. When the peppers have charred spots on all sides, remove from the heat and drain them on paper towels. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.