Pimentón de la VeraAs its name suggests, Pimentón de la Vera is paprika from the Vera area of Extremadura, which is one of the most beautiful and fertile parts of the region.
However, Pimentón de la Vera is much more than that. it's arguably the most outstanding paprika to be produced in Spain and has been protected by a D.O. (Denomination of Origin).
This paprika is special due to the unique flavour which comes from having been smoked over the embers of holm oaks, those trees that are so characteristic of the Extremadura countryside. Its smoky intensity is unmistakable and lends Pimentón de la Vera certain culinary attributes that Spanish and international chefs are really beginning to value.
One piece of advice when using Pimentón de la Vera in your own cooking: it can overpower dishes instead of complementing other ingredients if you overdose on it! In common with other paprika, it also burns easily (which robs it of much of its subtlety).
There are three main types of this product:
"Dulce" is literally sweet. This category is pungent yet without too much of a kick.
"Agridulce" is literally "sweet and sour" and is something of a halfway house, combining the sweetness of "Dulce" with the heat of "Picante".
"Picante" literally "bites" it's hot and powerful.
Each category lends itself to certain dishes and palates; Pimentón de la Vera is undoubtedly one of the best gourmet products to be found in Extremadura.