Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Paella Recipe

I was very spoilt this Christmas, and one of my gifts was a cherry red Le Creuset cast iron Buffet Casserole (yay!!) – perfect for Paellas! So what better reason does one need to prepare a deliciously fragrant – and not to mention healthy – seafood feast.

(Serves 4)

1 Pinch Saffron threads
80ml Sherry
2 Tbls Olive Oil
4 Spring Onions, chopped
3 Garlic cloves, sliced
4 Small or 1 large Sweet peppers
½ Chorizo sausage (about 15cm long), sliced
2 ½ Cups Arborio rice
500ml Chicken or vegetable stock
250g Squid, sliced or whole small tentacles
250g Small prawns, cleaned and de-shelled leaving the tail on
1 Smoked chicken fillet, sliced
1 Cup frozen peas
8 Langoustines, cleaned, with shell still on
Salt and pepper, for seasoning
Dried chilli flakes, for seasoning
Fresh coriander, for garnish
Fresh lemon wedges, for garnish

How to make it
Soak the Saffron in the sherry in a small pan, warm (but don’t boil) and set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a heavy based pan. Add the spring onions & sweet peppers and fry for 2 minutes.
Add the garlic and fry for another minute.
Add the chorizo and fry until the sausage edges become caramelised and the oil starts seeping out.
Scatter the rice over the bottom of the pan and fry for a few minutes, coating it well with the oil.
Add the chicken, squid, prawns, langoustines and peas, and toss everything together.
Heat the stock and pour over the rice mixture. Add the sherry and saffron mix.
Stir to mix everything together and bring to the boil. Once bubbling, turn down the heat to a simmer. Cook uncovered for 15 – 20 minutes, until the rice is tender. Do not stir at all.
Separate the rice and other ingredients lightly with a fork.
Season with salt, pepper and chilli flakes.
Serve scattered with fresh coriander and lemon wedges.

  • This dish is perfect for using up leftovers. Use whatever you have in the fridge. Meats should be cooked when added, but seafood raw.
  • You can spice it up with some smoked paprika.
  • A crispy crust should form at the bottom of the pan – just keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t blacken.
  • Have all your ingredients pre-prepped and sliced, once the cooking starts you won’t have time for chopping!

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