Paprika Cream

52 Comments

I wrote a post in late 2012 after I started my blog called “My New Favorite Ingredient.” I had about 4 followers then, and so I would like to re-introduce this ingredient on my blog.

The ingredient, or product, was given to me by my friend who has Hungarian parents, and I will always be indebted to her for her act of kindness. The product? Paprika Cream.

IMG_4011

There are a few different versions of it, all made by Univer in Hungary, but they’re very much the same product – a paste or “cream” made from red bell peppers. There is one called Goulash Creme, Sweet Paprika Mix, and Hot Paprika Mix.

The only way I can get my hands on more of this luscious stuff is to order online at Amazon.com, and they’re often out of the product. I would really love to taste a few of these varieties and see how they taste differently, but I can just be happy with one jar at a time, as they become available.

I have also gotten the Paprika Creme in a tube form.
paprika

So today I wanted to make risotto, and I thought that the perfect way to season it would be to add some of this lovely paprika cream. It’s so much easier to add a few tablespoons of paprika cream instead of roasting your own red bell peppers and processing them into a pulp. Besides, these are the good red bell peppers – the ones from which paprika is made – so the flavor is not just about red bell peppers that are roasted, but also spicy hot paprika.

And, the color is pretty spectacular, as well. You can use this cream for just about any culinary purpose for instant flavor, but I’ve also used it simply as a coating for pork tenderloin. It was fabulous.

Anyway, if you’ve never made a risotto before – trust me – they’re very easy to make. I’ve even taught young girls how to make a risotto. Which is why it infuriates me on these cooking shows like Hell’s Kitchen when the trained chefs mess up risottos. It’s not hard, people!!!

I’m not going to give you an exact risotto recipe, because to make a risotto is about so much more than following a recipe. You really have to feel the recipe, and let your brain be your guide. A risotto is a lot about common sense.

There’s a little elbow grease involved with risotto, as it requires a lot of stirring. But that’s not hard at all. The only rule is to not leave the kitchen while you’re making it. A risotto is a very hands-on dish.

Paprika Risotto
This recipe makes 2 servings

2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
2 shallots, diced
1 cup arborio or carnaroli rice

pap12
1/3 cup white wine
2 1/2 cups chicken broth, approximately
3 tablespoons paprika cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
Grated Parmesan, optional
Grilled chicken, optional

Place the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. There are pots made specifically for making risotto, but these aren’t necessary. A good saucepan and a wooden spoon will do.

When the butter melts, add the shallots and sauté them for a couple of minutes.

pap13

Then pour in the rice. Stir the rice all around, so that every bit of rice gets coated in butter. Stir the rice for about half a minute.
pap11

Then pour in the wine. Immediately begin stirring the rice as it absorbs the wine. You will notice the wine disappearing before your eyes as you stir. You must keep stirring to prevent the rice from sticking.
pap9
Once the wine is absorbed, begin adding the chicken broth, about 1/4 to 1/3 cup at a time. Stir the rice after each addition.
pap8

Every time the rice absorbs the liquid, you will have to make sure that you don’t wait too long before you add more liquid. Add liquid, stir. Repeat.
pap7

Once you can tell that the rice has essentially stopped absorbing, add the paprika cream and the salt. If you’re not sure you’ll like the paprika flavor, add less and taste. But I’m sure you’ll love it.
pap6

Once you’ve stirred in the paprika cream, you have a couple of options. Sometimes, people add cream and/or Parmesan cheese to risottos. Both of these additions are fabulous. However, today I just want the rice to show off, simply flavored with broth, shallots, and paprika.

Immediately put the hot risotto in a serving bowl.

pap1

Today I added some left over grilled chicken, and I placed a bowl of Parmesan nearby.

pap3

This was actually my lunch, and I got really hungry taking these photos. So I decided to go for it and I added a generous amount of Parmesan to the risotto!

pap2

The creaminess and sharpness of the Parmesan was perfect with the chicken and the paprika-flavored rice. I will make this again.
pap

If you ever happen upon some version of this Univer product, make sure and grab some. You’ll find all kinds of uses for it, trust me!

note: If you notice that the rice got really yellow while I was adding the chicken broth, it’s because my powdered variety of chicken broth is very yellow.

52 thoughts on “Paprika Cream

  1. I love risotto and, after making a roast chicken last night, am about to prepare homemade stock with the sole purpose of making risotto. It is really easy to make and your instructions are perfect. I’ll be on the lookout for this paprika cream…it sounds delicious and I’ll bet it’s wonderful made into a sauce for chicken or pork. :)

    Like

  2. Gorgeous!!!!!! Glad you brought this ingredient back to the spotlight, I have a bottled red pepper thing from Hungary, I need to check how it compares to yours. The risotto use is brilliant! Red brilliant! ;-)

    Like

      • I actually got a tube of it gifted to me from friends who went to Hungary last summer. They loved the cream so much, I think I’ll experiment with making it. The translation of the ingredients is: raw sweet paprika, pritamin pepper, salt, tomato paste, vegetable oil, water, flavor, sugar, modified corn starch, thickener, spices and celery flavor, food acid, a preservative, sulfur dioxide.
        Not too descriptive, especially in quantities, but if it turns out similar I’ll let you know!

        Like

  3. I’m glad you wrote about the paprika paste again. It definitely looks like a must find product. I will keep my eyes peeled.
    I’m always game for any intro to Hungarian cuisine. My grandmother was Hungarian but all I ever saw her make was poppy seed rolls.

    Like

  4. Paprika cream? I’d no idea. It sure did give your risotto a lovely color and I bet it added a nice flavor, too. I’ll have to look for it. It’s bound to be in one of the ethnic markets I frequent. Thanks for the tip.

    Like

  5. Thank you for the introduction to Paprika Cream it is new to me! I use both mild and spicy paprika in my cooking and can’t wait to try Paprika Cream. The risotto is so lush and creamy!

    Like

  6. I love paprika but I’ve never heard of cream! I love the smoky flavor that it adds to dishes, not to mention the beautiful color. What a treat with the chicken and parmesean added on top. I’m glad you reintroduced us to this ingredient :)

    Like

  7. You talked me into trying the paprika cream… I bought it on Amazon just now. I’ve never heard of it before, thanks for sharing! The risotto looks spectacular!! I’m totally bummed that it isn’t Amazon Prime, because now I have to wait more than a couple of days to try your risotto, because you can be sure that as soon as that baby gets here, I’ll be trying your recipe! <3

    Like

Please... write something!

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s