Product overview: Chili and paprika

Chili and paprika

Piment d'Espelette / Ezpeletako biperra PDO

The Basque pepper variety Piment d'Espelette (PDO since 1999) is wonderfully complex - rich, dark, smoky and roasted in flavor, though only moderate in heat (4000 Scoville units). Its pungent flavor slowly develops and remains a long time, giving the sweet taste of hay, fruit and toasted aromas.


Essential to Basque cuisine, including Bayonne ham, piperade (similar to lecsó) and poulet basquaise. Excellent in sauces, marinades and flavoring cooking oil. Great addition to soups, pasta, rice and casseroles - even chocolate. Use as an exciting alternative to black pepper in any dish. We offer pure ground Espelette, which contains no dyes, additives or preservatives.

History and production

Cultivated in the northern Pyrénées-Atlantiques mountains, Espelette has been central to Basque culture since its arrival from the New World in the 16th century. Ritually harvested in the French commune of Espelette and surrounding villages in late summer, the peppers are braided and hung on the balconies and walls of local homes to dry under the September sun.

Recipes: Le Syndicat de l'AOC Piment d'Espelette

Spanish Pimentón

Pimentón is one of the most important ingredients of Spanish cuisine. A round, peach-sized version of Capiscum annuum, it is red-orange in color with a mild, sweet flavor. Frequently used in chorizo, lomo and chilindron sauce, as well as with octopus and over eggs.

Pimentón de la Vera DOP

The most famous of Spanish paprika comes from the La Vera valley in Extremadura, not by accident called the "Szeged" of the Iberian Peninsula.


The peppers are planted in March and harvested by hand between September and November. The yield is then placed for two weeks in drying houses, where the peppers are gently smoked over burnt oak, being turned every day. Stems and seeds are then removed and the peppers are ground in a careful, slow manner to eliminate any frictional heat which could harm both the flavor and color.

The flavor is smoky, sweet and complex. Use with gratinee potatoes, chickpea and spinach stew, special fish and various bean dishes.

Of the three versions of La Vera Pimentón (Dulce, Agrodulce és Picante) we prefer and offer the sweet (Dulce) version.

Recipes: Pimentón de la Vera DOP

Dried chilis from Mexico


Long (15-30 cm), thin peppers. Matures from a dark green to a dark-brown or purple color. Slightly spicy flavor, 1000-2000 Scoville units.


Tiny, round chili pepper derived from Capsicum annuum. Name means "rattle," derived from the dried pepper's shape and sound of rattling seeds. Excellent in stews. 1000-2500 Scoville units.


Meaty, deep reddish-brown peppers characterized by moderate pungency, one of the most commonly cultivated chilis in Mexico. 2500-3000 Scoville units.

de Arbol

The most commonly used Mexican chili, thin and moderately spicy. Called "tree-like" for its woody stems. Related to cayenne pepper, spicy at 15,000 to 30,000 Scoville units.


Very small and very strong, maximum 2 cm long, red chili. Citrus, smoky and nutty aroma. Goes well with most pickles, salsas and sauces, as well in soups and with vinegar. 40,000 to 58,000 Scoville units.


The "Havana" of chili peppers, Capsicum chinense Jacquin is certainly one of the most intense. Popular ingredient in ultra-hot sauces and dishes. Power measured at 100,000 to 350,000 Scoville units.


Physalis ixocarpa looks like it belongs to the tomato, not paprika, family. Essential to green sauces and guacamole. Green in color, larger and round in form. Sour, sweet flavor.