Paprika - Verstegen Spices & Sauces


Paprika powder is made from specially cultivated red fruits of the pepper plant and is therefore called a spice. The pepper plant is an annual shrub-like plant with elongated fruits. The fruits are between 12 and 15 cm long. In the course of time, the cultivation of this plant has partly moved from Spain and Hungary to Peru, China and South Africa. Verstegen paprika powder is made from the paprika plant from Peru and Spain.

Smell and taste of paprika powder

There are different kinds of paprika powder. There is mild paprika and spicy paprika. A special type is smoked paprika, also called 'pimenton'. It is soft and spicy, with a smoky flavour and it colour is deep red.

Depending on the climate, the taste of the pepper plant will change. The hotter the climate, the spicier the taste. Therefore, with its mild climate, Hungary produces the sweetest and most aromatic peppers. The Spanish sweet pepper is a little more bitter. Countries with a similar climate to Spain, such as the upland areas of Peru, have peppers with the same flavour. In most areas in Africa, the sweet pepper is more orange and slightly spicier. Characteristic for sweet peppers is the aromatic, sweet spicy taste.

Paprika powder in dishes

Paprika powder is used to season both hot and cold dishes. In Hungary, paprika powder is used for seasoning and thickening dishes such as in goulash. Dishes in which paprika powder is used as a prevalent ingredient are goulash and goulash soup, Hungarian salami and Spanish chorizo. Also, paprika powder is used in red sauces, chicken, meat and fish dishes and in many South American and especially Mexican dishes. Smoked paprika powder is used differently. You can use this to add a smoky flavour to barbecue dishes and to flavour marinades, Spanish tapas or paella.