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Bugs found in Paprika

suz's picture

Anyone ever have this happen/problem?  I went to use my sweet Hungarian paprika and along with the powder were little bugs and lots of them. UGH! Glad I had on my glasses.

Marcia's picture

I've had the problem long ago with cayenne pepper of all things! Who would have thought that bugs would like the stuff.

I keep all of my paprikas in the freezer. It keeps much longer there and I've had no problems with bugs.

My sympathy for your buggy plight. They WOULD have to get into a nice and fairly expensive spice. It's quite possible that they were already there when you purchased it, BTW. :(

suz's picture

Marcia, I think the eggs may have been in the paprika, how else would they get in a sealed tin?  I just checked and the dry rub I made using the paprika has bugs (how did I use it and not see)?, ugh!

Marcia's picture

If the paprika was in a tin, I think you're right about the eggs being there already. Ugh is right, but we eat a good many bugs and bug parts we don't see, and that seems to be okay. Funny how that works. Still, it's a shame.

Gretchen's picture

Oh, just think about it as a high protein rub now!!  We used to say that in class about cream style corn, when doing the worm parts count!!


Wolvie is the one who first told me to put my paprikas in the fridge


Gretchen
Gretchen
suz's picture

Heading to the market to buy new paprika, make my two different dry rubs and into the refrigerator it goes. 

Pati's picture

Well...if the eggs are in the paprika to start, then putting it in the fridge only keeps the eggs from hatching. Yum...bug eggs. ; )

Gretchen's picture

Like I said, high protein spice!!. If they are frozen it will probably kill them. In the South you sometimes get used to "bugs/larva" in things, and the need to treat the product to kill them. Grits, cornmeal and flour.


It is also the reason that some curry powder comes with a bay leaf in it.


Gretchen
Gretchen
Astrid's picture

Does this happen usually in the summer, I wonder. Seems my memory might be functioning, but maybe not... all my spices have been on that shelf at least since last year.
It is expensive to buy fresh spices and stuff, but it should be, they are precious.

New Mexico home organic gardener

Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson

New Mexico home organic gardener Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson
Gretchen's picture

Yes, it is summer. It is "weevils' here usually. If you freeze the meal/flour first, it seems to kill the larva.

Gretchen

Gretchen
Astrid's picture

Ugh! is right. Was the paprika in a jar or just a paper envelope? Bugs could have gotten in through an envelope, or in a previously opened jar.

New Mexico home organic gardener

Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson

New Mexico home organic gardener Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson
suz's picture

The paprika came in a tin, with 3 different ways of opening it...and it's ALWAYS closed.

Canuck's picture

Ewww! I had that once in coriander. Take a really close look at the cupboard/drawer it was in to be sure none escaped. Mine were in a plastic bag and spread, developing into moths. PITA for a few weeks until I got everything into Mason jars and threw out anything I wasn't sure about.

suz's picture

I'm going to look, fortunately or unfortunately depending on how you look at it the little bugs are red like paprika and will be easy to spot outside of the powder.  UGH!

Regality's picture

I can remember having bugs in....some spice or herb long ago.  I wonder if it was paprika.

Maedl's picture

You might want to check your other herbs, spices, flours, etc. just to be sure you don't have companions to the paprika bugs.

Margie
Between the Alps and the Chesapeake Bay:
Where Food and Culture Intersect
www.alpsandbay.blogspot.com

Margie Between the Alps and the Chesapeake Bay: Where Food and Culture Intersect www.alpsandbay.blogspot.com
SuB's picture

I just got up from my desk, walked to the pantry and put all my paprikas into the freezer.  If they were to get bugs in that would really p_ss me off.  Thanks for the heads-up.


Cheers, Sue B.


The older I get, the better I was.

Cheers, Sue B.

The older I get, the better I was.

suz's picture

My new bottle (bought a different brand) is now in the refrigerator.

Marcia's picture

Your paprikas will keep their color and flavor for a longer time in the freezer, too, so it's good for more than just bugs. Just bugs...what am I saying? lol

suz's picture

Marcia do you think there is a big difference between the refrigerator or the freezer?

Marcia's picture

I wish I knew, but it might depend on how long you plan to keep the paprika. I order pretty large amounts(considering my use of it) from Penzey's and other sources, and have always used the freezer for storage.

It does keep well in the fridge, but for how long I can't say. The refrigerator doesn't keep larva from hatching, either, if I'm not mistaken, which I may be. :-)

suz's picture

It's the larva hatching that now has me concerned.  Freezing would mean thawing each time you use? and then refreeze?  This won't have any effect on the spice?

Gretchen's picture

I don't think it would thaw in the time it takes to measure. But I have had no problem with the fridge storage.  Not all paprika is going to have these.  And possibly smoked paprika (which is mostly what I have stored, probably is not going to have them.

Gretchen

Gretchen
suz's picture

Not to be dense but doesn't it need to thaw in order to measure?

Marcia's picture

No, you don't need to thaw in order to measure. The paprika stays powdery. I've never had a problem.

suz's picture

Thank you as my visual was getting hard in the freezer!

Marcia's picture

No, not at all. It might clump a bit but that's easily fixed. If it's in a tin, just shake.

suz's picture

Thanks, moving from refrigerator to freezer.

Gretchen's picture

What Marcia said--and even if it did, you can loosen it with a spoon.

Gretchen

Gretchen
suz's picture

Thanks Gretchen

Florida2's picture

Yuck! what brand was the paprika and where did you purchase it?