Paprika Recipe & Nutrition | Precision Nutrition's Encyclopedia of Food

Paprika

Paprika

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At a Glance

Paprika is a bright red dried spice made from the chili pepper family. Its flavor can range from sweet and mild to hot and smokey. Paprika is packed with carotenoids and Vitamin A. Like other dried spices, it should be stored in an airtight container, kept in a cool and dried place, and used within 6 months. Paprika is known for its use in Hungarian dishes like Goulash and Paprikash, but it is also a versatile spice that can be added to soups, stews, potatoes, eggs dishes, and more.

Overview

Paprika is a spice made from the chili pepper family. Grind up dried chili peppers (capsicum) into a fine dust and you’ll have paprika.

Perhaps best known for its liberal use in Hungarian cooking (as in the paprika-spiced stew, goulash), paprika is enjoyed by many different cultures for its kick of flavor and bright color.

Just like the peppers it comes from, paprika can be sweet and mild, medium-spicy, or hot.

Hot smoked paprika is another variation. In Spain, for example, smoked Paprika is called pimentón and is a primary ingredient in chorizo sausage.

Identification

The texture of paprika is very fine (unlike chili flakes, which also come from dried chili peppers).

This dried spice is a deep orange-red color. If used in high quantities it can color an entire dish. Sprinkled liberally, it can add an exciting pop of color to otherwise pale foods (like chicken or potatoes).

The color of paprika can vary depending on type. Smoked paprika, for example, has a deeper, richer color than regular paprika.

Nutrition Info

1 tsp of paprika contains 6 calories, 0.3g of protein, 0.3g of fat, 1.2g of carbohydrates, 0.8g of fiber, and 0.2g of sugar.

The deep red color of paprika does more than look pretty: it also comes packed with carotenoids and vitamin A.

Paprika also offers vitamin E, vitamin B6, iron, riboflavin, niacin, potassium, and is even packed with fiber.

Selection

If buying in a package, check for the date the spices were packaged: technically, the spices may last indefinitely, but flavor tends to dwindle significantly after 6 months.

If buying bulk, choose from a supplier that sells a lot of spices (in other words, where turnover is high and the bulk spices aren’t sitting out for months at a time).

Paprika should be fragrant and brightly colored. If it smells dull or musty, or the color looks flat, don’t buy it.

Storage

Store your spices in an airtight container and keep them in a cool, dark place, such as the pantry. Avoid keeping them over the stove where heat and moisture can affect their flavor and longevity. Never refrigerate dried spices.

Preparation

Paprika can be used as part of your usual seasoning: add it along with salt and pepper to your meat or vegetables for an extra hit of flavor, color, and nutrients. Or, get creative and use paprika in your spice rubs, barbecue sauces, and marinades.

Paprika is an excellent spice to enliven mild tasting foods. It works great as a dry rub for chicken, pork chops, or tofu. Try dusting it onto roasted potatoes or corn-on-the-cob. Mix it into your macaroni and cheese. Stir it into your chowder. Or add it to a spicy tomato sauce paired with poached eggs.

(Tip: next time you make a grilled cheese sandwich, try swapping out your usual cheddar for some Spanish Manchego cheese. Brush the bread with olive oil and dust with garlic powder and smoked paprika. Grill until cheese is melted. Enjoy!)

Recipe: Spanish Tomato Soup with Almonds and Smoked Paprika

Paprika

This soup is a great compliment to a cold day. It packs a real flavor punch that is sure please your taste buds and leave you wanting more.

Ingredients

vine tomatoes, whole
2 pounds
red bell peppers, de-seeded and torn into large pieces
2
onion, cut into quarters
1 small
garlic, cut in half
1 head
thyme, fresh
2 springs
salt
1 + 1 tsp
almonds, shaved
1/2 cup
water, warm
2-3 cups
extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp
smoked paprika
1 tsp
egg, boiled, peeled, sliced width-wise
1 medium
almonds, chopped
1 tbps
smoked paprika
sprinkle of

Directions

Prep Time: 20 minutes   Cook Time: 30 minutes   Yield: 4-6 bowls of soup

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the tomatoes, pepper pieces, onion, garlic and thyme onto a sheet pan and season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Place in the oven and roast until cooked and nicely charred, about 30 minutes.

While the vegetables are roasting, place the shaved almonds and 1 cup of the water into a small saucepan and bring up to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes and drain. Set shaved almonds aside.

To cook the egg: place the egg in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Place the saucepan on high heat. When the water reaches a boil, remove pan from heat and let sit for 7 minutes. Drain the water and shock the egg with cold water. Peel and slice once cooled.

Blend the shaved almonds with 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon paprika, and 1 cup of warm water in a blender until frothy, about 2 minutes. Pour the almond mix into a medium sized pot or bowl.

Blend the roasted vegetables and 1 tablespoon olive oil, adding water if it seems too thick. Add the vegetable puree to the almond mix and whisk to combine.

Garnish with sliced egg, chopped almonds, the remaining olive oil, and a good sprinkle of paprika.

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At a Glance

Paprika is a bright red dried spice made from the chili pepper family. Its flavor can range from sweet and mild to hot and smokey. Paprika is packed with carotenoids and Vitamin A. Like other dried spices, it should be stored in an airtight container, kept in a cool and dried place, and used within 6 months. Paprika is known for its use in Hungarian dishes like Goulash and Paprikash, but it is also a versatile spice that can be added to soups, stews, potatoes, eggs dishes, and more.