Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Pepper Poppy Sesame Blend

Recipe from Steven Raichlen's BBQ USA

This simple spice blend is loosely modeled on a Japanese seasoning called shichimi. To make it more authentic, you’d add two teaspoons of finely chopped nori (seaweed) and a teaspoon of chopped dried orange peel.

  • Yield: 1/4 cup

  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 2 tablespoons hot red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons black or toasted white sesame seeds (see tips)
  • 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Step 1: Combine the paprika, hot red pepper flakes, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, and black pepper in a small bowl.

Step 2: Stir to mix. Stored in a sealed jar away from heat and light, the spice mix will keep for at least 6 months.


Black sesame seeds are available at Japanese markets and natural foods stores.

To toast white sesame seeds, place them in a small dry skillet (don’t use a nonstick skillet for this) over medium heat. Cook until the seeds are fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes, shaking the pan to ensure even toasting. Transfer the toasted sesame seeds to a heatproof bowl to cool.

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Steven Raichlen, a national barbecue treasure and author of The Barbecue! Bible, How to Grill, and other books in the Barbecue! Bible series, embarks on a quest to find the […]

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