Spices Unearthed: Paprika

what does paprika taste like?

Sprinkle a bit of sweet paprika on your hand. Raise it to your nose and smell the earthy red powder. Hard to explain, right? Now, try tasting it. It definitely has a flavor, but it's not any easier to define.

So what is paprika?
It's a capsicum (bell pepper) that is dried and ground. Different types of capsicum are used to create the sweet or hot or smoked paprika that you taste in many Hungarian and Spanish dishes. 

Hot paprika will give your food a bit of a kick, and smoked paprika will give it a BBQ flavor, but what about the common sweet paprika? Nop, not a particularly sweet taste. You'll have to try to find out.

Try it on chicken, or a dash of it on pasta or soup, or use it to bring some life to vegetables.

Before you notice the taste, you will notice the color. Paprika is great for adding that rich red color to dishes, especially the sweet paprika, which is the reddest. Good looking food matters.

What you won't see, but what matters even more, are all the antioxidants and Vitamin C that paprika naturally adds to your food. The spice may also improve your immune system, circulation, blood pressure, and digestion.

Don't let anyone ever tell you that paprika is only good for turning your food red!