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In the culinary arts, capers are a condiment, usually pickled, that are made from the immature flower buds of the caper bush (Capparis spinosa), which grows in Mediterranean regions.

Capers are used in a number of Italian recipes such as chicken piccata, veal piccata and pasta puttanesca. Sometimes capers are cured by salting rather than pickling. Cooking with capers is a matter of balancing their tangy, briny, pickly flavor against some sort of smooth, buttery or velvety flavors and textures.

They're also widely used in sauce making, in salads, as a condiment or as a flavorful garnish. Capers are frequently used in conjunction with lemons. They pair well with salmon, especially smoked salmon.

Capers substitute: Because capers have such a strong briny taste, you could try using finely diced green olives instead.

Another use for capers is as a pizza topping. I'd personally make a pizza topped with mozzarella cheese, sliced red onions and capers.

Capers are also the traditional garnish for beef carpaccio. They can also go in chicken salad, pasta salad or potato salad, on top of deviled eggs, or in the classic Nicoise salad. They can even go in a martini cocktail in place of the olive.

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