Paprika is made from a combination of different types of peppers–green, red, sweet, and hot. It can thus range in flavor from sweet or mild to very hot and spicy, depending on the blend.
Paprika is used to give food both flavor and color–and the latter is why it is sometimes sprinkled over the top of dishes like rice. Paprika is also used as a natural food colorant in dishes that are deep red or brownish-red.
Paprika is widely used in Hungarian cuisine. Indeed, restaurants and most homes will have at least three or four different types. It’s also widely used in Spain, with a clear preference for sweet paprika, while in Turkey and eastern countries the preference is for hot or spicy paprika.
Paprika is also used in sausage-making.