These chilli flakes are a hot ingredient, since being championed by Nigella and Ottolenghi. Pul biber is an everyday table spice in Turkey where it’s liberally sprinkled over dishes, like the Eastern equivalent of black pepper – the perfect kick for fried eggs, avocado toast, roast salmon or grilled aubergine.
The best Aleppo pul biber is a bright orange-red colour with a sundried tomato like fruitiness. It has a moist texture, thanks to the traditional drying process which involves bagging and ‘sweating’ the chilli flakes to make sure that they retain their natural oils. The end result is a world away from paper-dry, tasteless chilli flakes.
Instead, Aleppo pul biber is all about delivering a big finishing flavour. Throughout Turkish cafes, customers might use Aleppo pul biber to season lahmacun flatbread, kebabs and manti dumplings. There’s no need to stick to the rules though – Aleppo pul biber is a versatile spice which will enhance anything from grilled prawns to pizza.
As its name suggests Aleppo pul biber originates in Syria, though most of the market supply currently comes from Turkey, which shares a similar climate, suited to chilli pepper cultivation.
Aleppo pul biber should be stored in a dark, airtight container, to retain its potency and moist texture. Keep packs away from steam, as humidity will cause it to clump.
The ingredient capsaicin, which is found in chillies, is thought to boost the metabolism, burn calories and satiate appetites. Studies also indicate that eating spicy foods on a regular basis may reduce mortality rates, for more information click HERE.
Aleppo pul biber, sunflower oil, salt
ALSO KNOWN AS: Turkish red pepper flakes, Turkish red pepper, Aci pul biber, Ipec pul biber madras, Aleppo pepper
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