Cooks all over the world rely on chile powders, from paprika to cayenne, for heat, but ground aleppo pepper, featured in many of the Turkish dishes in Soul of a City, adds much more. Named for a city in Syria, aleppo chiles, a variety of Capsicum annuum, are seeded, sun-dried, and crushed. The resulting russet-colored shards convey hints of tobacco and a lemony piquancy that meld brilliantly with other flavors, and their coarseness can add an unexpected textural dimension to salads, kebabs, and sauteed vegetables.
Sun and Spice
The little-known aleppo pepper makes a great substitute for paprika or cayenne.