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Paella

 
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Quince



Joined: 18 Mar 2008
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 1:52 pm    Post subject: Paella Reply with quote

I thought you might like my Paella recipe too!

Paella - boiled rice.

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This is a very forgiving dish and should be tried.

My mother learned to make Paella on the coast of Spain about 30 years ago. I learned from her and started making paella about 15 years ago. My first paella was in a frying pan over an open oak fire on the banks of Lake Michigan. Since then I've progressed to a custom made fire pit cut from a steel drum and progressively larger pans now as big as the drum. My big pan is 55 cm and uses a kilo of rice. I've never tried it in an oven or over a gas ring but know both work.

Your restriction will be the size of your door as it uses a flat pan or dish. I think that if you know how to cook in your oven you will be able to modify this method to work more like a caserole. I had a local spanish friend cook us a Paella last year over a gas ring and her methodology was quite different...still turns out great.

Now the history of Paella goes back to the Valencia region of Spain where they produce a short grain rice. Paellas can run from plain rice, to seafood, to mountain (meats), or mixtures. My friends do a mushroom and asparagus paella. One version goes that during the morning whatever could be found was collected for the midday meal....maybe collect some snails, shoot a rabbit, pick some vegetables...what have you.....then the Paella would be cooked in the fields for the noon day meal (at 3 oclock)

Here's my mixed paella recipe done over an open fire:
(It will need to be modified to work in an oven but the ingredients and process should help guide you. Note the other post in this Rice/Vegetables section and track down the book by Penelope Casas called Paella...it's great)

Base Ingredients;
Rice,
and hot soup stock, three times the volume of short grain rice you will use (remember it boils off), known as caldo in Spain....it's key to a good paella
olive oil,
garlic and rosemary.

Optional Ingredients.

Seafoods? ...
Raw Shrimp with shell on, bigger are better
calamari, tubes and tennacles cut into pieces
fish, I've used perch, whitefish and catfish
mussels, whole live but you can precook without shells if you want
....what do you like ....scallops?

Meats? ...
Chicken rough cut with cleaver, leg quarters cut in 4 pieces (dark is better)
pork pieces with bone,
rabbit, cut like the chicken
andouille sausage pieces
I think lamb or beef are too strong but I have not tried them

Vegetables? ....
garbanzo beans, rinsed
tomatoes, chopped
green beans, whole
onions, chopped
red peppers, sliced lenghwise
squash, sliced

Spices ....
chopped garlic and rosemary,
saffron and/or smokey paprika, added to dry rice
boullion cubes, added to soup stock (the salt basically)
Some rosemary to throw in the fire too.

The fire is hot initially and later will be cooler when the rice is boiling.
With a hot pan I add some olive oil and garlic.
The shrimp are tossed in, turned over and pulled out.
The calamari is then thrown in and taken out, very quickly.
Then I put in the pork and chicken, browning the pieces well. They can even look burnt but this will flavor the boiled rice.
As I'm doing the above items, I will often throw in some additional oil, garlic, rosemary or onions depending on how things are going.
When the meat is browned, not cooked, I open up the center of the pan, add some olive oil and dump in the chopped tomatoes. I think this step helps later when you're trying to get a bit of a crust on the bottom, some consider the best part.
I then add the rice and stir it around a bit to mix in the olive oil and tomatoes.
After a couple of minutes the caldo is added and the garbanzo's. (you must have a big enough pan to hold all your ingredients and soup stock!)
Now I add ingredients according to how much cooking time is needed and how you like things to be cooked.
the green beans.
Later the shrimp go back in placed on top with the Squash and red peppers.
Fish laid on top last and mussels pushed into the mixture vertically. They will open and be cooked by the time it's served.

Now the trick is to pull your paella off/out early as it rests for 10 minutes before serving. During this period it's covered with a lid/foil/cloth to conserve the heat and moisture. When the paella is taken off the fire, there is still some liquid in it that will be taken up by the rice while it rests.

Now I've heard stories of Spanish perfectionists that will throw out a whole paella because the rice is not done right. All the ones I've done get eaten! And I've learned it's a pretty forgiving dish. (Except the one that got sand kicked in it, ....yes I cook with wine!)

I save leftovers and heat up later, adding a bit of liquid/white wine. Oven reheat is best, but a microvave is ok. My friends love it the next morning for breakfast.

Good luck.

If you have any questions, I'd be happy to try and answer.

And as I mentioned, the Casas book on Paella talks a lot about doing it in a conventional oven. I've just never done it. I've had gas rings for 10 years and have yet to try that method that most Spanish do.

Salut, Amor, Peseta y tiempo para guzarlos.
Jim
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Art
Site Admin


Joined: 17 Feb 2003
Posts: 4471
Location: Maryland

PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Jim,
Your recipe has some interesting ideas. I don't know how I missed this earlier, but I found it tonight while planning a Christmas Day paella!

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Hola, Jim,
Tu receta tiene algunas ideas interesantes. No sé cómo me lo perdí antes, pero lo encontré esta noche mientras que pensando de hacer una paella para el día de Navidad!
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