Paprika

 Paprika Key facts Paprika is popular in central and Eastern Europe, where it is used in dishes such as goulash, to add heat and warmth. Smoked paprika, or pimenton, is a Spanish ingredient that adds plenty of warmth and spice to paella, braised dishes and chicken.

This is a spice that's ground from dried sweet red peppers – both mild and hot – and comes labelled as such. In this case hot does not really mean chilli-hot, but more piquant, so have no fear.

It is made in Hungary and used extensively in Hungarian and Austrian dishes (in wonderful pepper-scented stews such as goulash or chicken paprika). The Spanish also produce paprika and it turns up in many of their recipes – the famous chorizo sausage is made with it. Recently Spain has been producing smoked paprika from dried smoked peppers, and this has added a whole new dimension to this particular spice.

Once again, remember the rule: buy in small quantities and replace frequently. If you can't find it in supermarkets, smoked pimentón is available from two of Delia's favourite stockists, The Spice Shop and Brindisa.

 
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