For the Love of Paprika

By: Chasity Marini

I was just like everyone else, I bought my spices at the grocery store and put them in my recipes as they were called for. That’s what I was supposed to do. Right? I only used paprika to add a speck of color to my deviled eggs, as my predecessors had. I never thought twice about it, until I had fresh spices…mind blown!

The paprikas I tried from The Spice House were so rich and had so much depth of flavor. A whole world of opportunities opened up for me. Using paprika as the dominant spice for a main dish, who’d have thought? Oh, I began thinking alright. I learned to make Chicken Paprikash, and started using smoked paprika in my egg salad. Paprika became a welcomed enrichment to my stews, sauces and frittatas.

My two favorite paprikas are hands down Hungarian Sweet and Smoked Sweet Spanish. Hungarian paprika’s richness is unprecedented, and Spanish paprika adds just the right amount of flavor without overwhelming the dish with its smokiness.

For those of you who are new to the paprika party, I feel it’s best to make a dish that emphasizes the flavor and color of this under-appreciated spice. Behold Chicken Paprikash, a dish that turns a garnish into the focal point of flavor.

As I said before, I had only used paprika to garnish my deviled eggs. With what I know now, I know better. You can use either our hot or sweet smoked paprikas for this recipe. Sweet paprika means that the seeds and veins have been removed before being processed, leaving a milder flavor. This is a perfect picnic recipe. Enjoy it as a sandwich or make an appetizer by putting a scoop over crostini. Top it off with fresh dill and another sprinkle of paprika, of course.

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