Crushed red pepper Crushed red pepper or red pepper flakes is a condiment consisting of dried and crushed (as opposed to ground) red chili peppers.
This condiment is most often produced from cayenne-type peppers, although commercial producers may use a variety of different cultivars, usually within the 30,000–50,000 Scoville unit range.
The town of Bukovo in the Republic of Macedonia is credited with the creation of crushed red pepper. The name of the village—or a derivative of it—is now used as a name for crushed red pepper in general in a number of Southeast European languages: "буковка" (bukovka, Macedonian), "bukovka" (Serbian, Croatian and Slovene) and "μπούκοβο" (búkovo, Greek).
Crushed red pepper shakers have become standard on tables at Italian-style restaurants and especially pizza parlors in the United States. Often there is a high ratio of seeds, which some people believe intensifies the heat. Crushed red pepper is used by food manufacturers in pickling blends, chowders, spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, soups and sausage.
Crushed red pepper in Turkey, served as a common condiment with very few seeds, is known as pul biber and "paprika" in English. One specially prepared variety of it is the Urfa pul biber.