Let's talk about BBQ spices. One of the primary spices used by just about every barbecue guru, junkie or commercial manufacturer is paprika. Paprika is a mild red pepper that gives most barbeque rubs or barbecue sauces their color. I always associated paprika with Hungarian and Spanish dishes, so I never really understood the connection to barbeque. However I do now.
According to the encyclopedia of spices, paprika, like all peppers, is native to South America. Since barbeque is said to have been invented by Native Americans, the connection is now obvious to me.
Here's the definiton of paprika from the encyclopedia of spices: Paprika is a fine powder ground from certain varieties of Capsicum annuum which vary in size and shape. They may be small and round (Spain and Morocco) or pointed and cone shaped (Hungary and California). They are larger and milder than chilli peppers. Paprika is produces from peppers ripened to redness, sometimes called ‘pimento’, the same as used to stuff olives. The powder can vary in colour from bright red to rusty brown.
Bouquet: slightly warm and sweet
Flavour: ranges from sweet and mild to pungent and fiery.
Hotness Scale: 2-6
In future posts I'll be talking about other BBQ spices, rubs and sauces. I have a lot of sauces and rubs to review from my Texas trip. Every barbeque master needs his own flavor signature and I've been working on mine. I've been creating my own rub and I will be putting my results on this here blog.