Aleppo Pepper, also known as Halaby pepper, is a variety of Capsicum annuum that has an ideally balanced heat and flavor profile. Today, many chileheads consider Aleppo Pepper to be one of the best kept secrets of the chile world. The Aleppo pod ripens to a deep burgundy color where they are then harvested and semi-dried. Typically you only find Aleppo Pepper as a crushed chile pepper with most of the seeds removed. Crushed Aleppo Pepper is a flavorful departure from the more common crushed red peppers.
We’ had several of our restaurant chef customers requesting this chile pepper so we had to find a good source for these and this will quickly become one of your kitchen favorites. A large jar of this has even made its way to a permanent spot on our dining room table.
When and Where to Use
Aleppo Pepper is at home in both savory and sweet dishes.
Use this pepper for authentic chile flavor in any Mediterranean or Middle Eastern dish such as baba ghanoush, hummus and kabobs (or just about any other grilled meat). It can also be used as a substitute for crushed red pepper, paprika or cayenne pepper. We like to mix it in with our Mediterranean Dry Rub for just a little extra kick.
Aleppo’s complexity works well with cinnamon, coriander, cumin and oregano.
This pairs well with eggs, pasta, pizzas, salads (especially chicken, pasta, potato and tuna), soups, baked winter squash or any tomato based recipe. You’ll find it as a heavenly addition to the grill on burgers, chicken, kabobs, pork chops and steaks. It can also quickly become a secret ingredient in your own rubs and marinades.
I don’t think that it plays particularly well with vegetables as they are easily overpowered. Aleppo is an excellent chile pepper for the baker and partners extraordinarily well with the spiciness of cinnamon. Its acidity and heat also perfectly balances with chocolate and sugar which makes it an unexpected star in brownies, hot chocolate and spiced nuts.