Paprika, the Ottoman spice

This article is also available in: Italiano

The history of paprika, a spice created by the Ottomans and which then spread throughout the Hungarian countryside, forever changing the taste of Europe and the world

Ottoman spice

Although formed from peppers, originating in Mexico, paprika was invented at the Ottoman court of Buda, now part of Budapest, Hungary. Here the Turkish soldiers had the brilliant idea of creating a new mix of spices with the vegetables just arrived from the New World, thus forming the first version of paprika ever existed.

Gül Baba’s grave in Budapest

According to legend, for a long time the Hungarian people were kept in the dark about this delicious secret, which they will discover only thanks to a girl who, like Prometheus for the fire, escaped from the harem and instructed the farmers about the famous recipe. In the 19th century the recipe was then developed in Szeged, also in Hungary, where the “sweet” version was invented by the Pàlfi brothers.


Since paprika is a real mix of peppers, it is rich in: vitamin A, vitamin C, beta-carotene and lutein, all elements that make it interesting even from a nutritional point of view.

Paprika is still one of the most appreciated and used spices in the world, with a now global consumption due to its unique flavor.

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