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The Localist: Shishito Peppers from JBG Organic Farms

Shishito peppers have been popping up on restaurant menus and farmers markets throughout the area for quite some time. The slender, finger length green pepper is heralded to be the cousin of Spain’s famed Padron pepper. While they’re known for primarily being sweet and mild, you will come across a heated one once in a while.

One of the sheer advantages of living in a much warmer climate has been seeing the different varieties of eggplant and peppers hit the marketplace. Along with some Texas okra, I purchased about a pound of shishito peppers showcasing a Texas Grown label linking back to JBG Organic Farms. One visit to their site and I was sold on their farm. JohnsonBackyardGarden originally started as a CSA backyard project and has managed to grow into a 50-plus acre empire right outside of Austin. They still hold firm to their community-supported agriculture roots. Enrollment in their weekly produce delivery program is open to residents all across the state.

Shishitos are a favorite snack in our home when I need to whip something up on a whim. They are simple to prepare and take well to many global flavors. I believe they are best sautéed in olive oil and finished with some coarse sea salt and a fresh squeeze of lemon juice. One of the most important lessons I learned as a young cook was to never underestimate the power of acid. It can take a dish to the next level. Most restaurants accompany them with a dipping sauce, which is always a delicious idea. This time I sprinkled them with a mix of toasted sesame seeds and salt, and served them alongside an inherently savory white miso mayonnaise.

You can learn more about JBG Organic Farms by visiting their website.