Originating in Japan, the Shishito pepper is believed to have gotten its name from its tip end which, to some, resembles the head of a lion--or in Japanese, shishi. Shishito peppers are petite and relatively mild in flavor, with one out of every ten peppers offering a random spicy kick. They have long been a popular snack food item in Japan and in recent years have become more mainstream in the United States. Their peppery taste takes on a richer flavor profile--and becomes slightly smoky--when cooked. Most commonly, they are prepared blistered in oil, finished with sea salt and served, stem on, as finger food. Once blistered, they can be chopped and utilized atop pizzas, pasta, omelets and salads, or served with dipping sauce. In Japanese cuisine, the petite Shishito peppers are often prepared yakitori-style on a skewer.