Smoked Chili Flakes from Daphnis and Chloe
Greek Pepper Flakes Smoked Over Birch Wood
In Northern Greece, the culinary importance of peppers dates back to the Ottoman Empire—and, still are a beloved ingredient in kitchens across the country. One of the most noteworthy is the Karatzova pepper, grown in Almopia—a region in the Northernmost part of Greece, bordering North Macedonia—known for its sweet and mildly spicy flavor. Now, there are only a select number of farmers cultivating this local variety.
For Daphnis & Chloe's Smoked Chili Flakes, the Karatzova peppers are allowed to ripen through the end of the season in September. The peppers are harvests, washed and hand-sorted before being slowly dried on birch wood for 10 days. During the smoking, the farmers work in shifts tending the fire night and day to make sure it never goes out. After this smoking and drying process, the peppers are destemmed and crushed manually to create a rich, deeply smoky chili flake with a robust sweetness and subtle, building heat.
How to use
Smoked Chili Flakes from Daphnis and Chloe bring delicate, wood-fired flavor and mild spice with just a pinch. Add to sauces, soups and stews. We especially love them with potatoes. Toss quartered Yukon Gold potatoes with plenty of olive oil, the juice of a lemon, crushed Aegean Isle Oregano, a generous pinch of smoked chili flakes and salt and pepper. Roast at 400°F, flipping halfway through, until golden and tender, about 30–35 minutes. Psst, this method also works wonders with cauliflower.
Use these Greek smoked chili flakes to make a feisty, herby, use-on-everything condiment—heat a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over medium heat, add a 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes and let them bloom for 30 seconds. Transfer the chili oil to a bowl and mix with another few tablespoons of olive oil, the zest of one lemon, salt, chopped parsley and mint. Spoon over roasted chicken, use to baste grilled lamb chops, toss with white beans or drizzle over baked feta.
About the producer
Former journalist Evangelia Koutsovoulou established Daphnis and Chloe, a company that sources dried culinary herbs and spices, in Athens in 2013. The Mediterranean herbs are all grown and harvested in ideal geographic settings, which range from remote land in the mountains to small islands and allow the products to reach their prime. Daphnis and Chloe herbs are hand-picked and processed using non-invasive artisanal methods.
Try Oregano from Taygetus, which won a sofi™ Gold Award for Seasoning & Spice in 2017, Unique Greek Sage, sofi™ Silver Award-winning Wild Thyme Flowers and more. The thyme buds are cut and selected one by one and are as beautiful as they are versatile: pair with grilled vegetables, use in marinades for chicken or steep in tea.
Learn more about Koutsovoulou's story in this article from the Wall Street Journal.
- Daphnis and Chloe
- 50 grams (1.76 ounces)