Chef's Recipes

Salad of smoked bonito, piquillo peppers and celery

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for salad of smoked bonito, piquillo peppers and celery by Elvis Abrahanowicz and Ben Milgate.

By Elvis Abrahanowicz & Ben Milgate
  • Serves 8
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Salad of smoked bonito, piquillo peppers and celery


  • 150 gm bonito fillets, skin on
  • 30 gm sea salt
  • 50 gm brown sugar
  • 300 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small celery stalk (from the inner section of the bunch), thinly sliced, leaves torn
  • 1 Lebanese cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1-1½ piquillo peppers, sliced (see note)
  • 1 spring onion, thinly sliced
  • 40 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 40 ml white vinegar
  • ½ garlic clove, microplaned


  • 1
    Put the bonito fillets in a non-reactive container. Whisk the salt, brown sugar and 750ml (3 cups) water in a bowl until the salt and sugar have dissolved, then pour onto the fish, cover and refrigerate to brine lightly for 20 minutes.
  • 2
    Remove the fillets from the brine, pat them dry with absorbent paper, then cold-smoke them (see note) for 15-20 minutes at medium-high smoke.
  • 3
    Heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the bonito fillets and poach in the oil, warming them through until they’re flaking apart. Remove with a slotted spoon. Once cool enough to handle, peel off and discard the skin, then flake the fish.
  • 4
    For the vinaigrette, place all ingredients in a bowl, season with a pinch of fine sea salt and whisk to combine.
  • 5
    Arrange the flaked bonito, celery and leaves, cucumber and piquillo pepper on a plate. Drizzle with the vinaigrette and finish with spring onion.