Shishito Peppers with Bonito Sand and Tofu Mustard

Michael Voltaggio’s clever recipe for crispy fried shishito peppers features crunchy, sweet and umami-packed bonito sand, a simple combination of almond flour, bonito flakes, sugar and butter. Plus: More Best New Chefs

Shishito Peppers with Bonito Sand and Tofu Mustard
Photo: © Marcus Nilsson
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
50 mins


  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour

  • cup almond flour

  • ¼ cup bonito flakes (5 grams)

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • Salt

  • 6 ounces extra-firm silken tofu (drained)

  • 1 ½ tablespoons Dijon mustard

  • ¼ cup plus 1/2 teaspoon grapeseed or canola oil

  • 6 ounces shishito peppers (4 cups)

  • 2 cups baby mustard greens or mixed baby greens


  1. Preheat the oven to 325° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a food processor or a blender, combine the flour, almond flour, bonito flakes and sugar and pulse until fine. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles sand. Spread the mixture on the parchment and bake for about 20 minutes, stirring 2 or 3 times, until the sand is toasted and fragrant. Let cool completely, then rub the mixture between your fingers to break up any lumps. Season with salt.

  2. In a blender, combine the tofu and mustard and puree until smooth. Season with salt.

  3. Heat a large cast-iron skillet until very hot. Add the 1/4 cup of grapeseed oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the shishito peppers and cook over high heat, turning, until tender and blistered in spots, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the peppers to a paper towel–lined plate and sprinkle with salt.

  4. In a medium bowl, toss the greens with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of oil and season with salt.

  5. Spoon a tablespoon of the tofu mustard onto each plate and top with the peppers. Sprinkle with some of the bonito sand. Mound the greens on top and serve right away.

Make Ahead

The tofu mustard can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. The bonito sand can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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