Sunday, February 27, 2011


The name comes from the broad, shallow pan used to cook this dish -- paella or paellera. It originated from the Valencia region of Spain. Cooked outdoors, true Paella is not made with seafood but with chicken, rabbit, several kinds of beans and sometimes even snails. Overtime, fancier versions were born: fish, shellfish, vegetables, pork or chorizo sausages.

I came across a cloth bag of "Arroz Calasparra" at one of my favourite eateries. 1 kilo of "The Best Rice for Paella" says the label. I just had to get it!
When a bunch of us decided to get together over the winter months for culinary potluck adventures with a theme, I pulled out my bag of arroz and declared that mine would be Spain! I would do the main. And it would be Paella. Soooooo, I researched a bit. Forums. Dos and don'ts. Paella pan. Versions. And of course it would have to be cooked in the fireplace over a bed of coals.  I line up my ingredients: saffron, beautiful smoked Spanish paprika to name a few. Paella is not fancy. It's comfort food and a one pot dish. The recipe even says to "evenly distribute the ingredients, gently pat down the top, cook uncovered and without stirring... A dark crust on the bottom of the pan is considered desirable." How easy is that!

I will try this again with a few modifications.

1 comment:

  1. I loved the paella - it was a work of art! The colours against the black cast iron were amazing, as was the heavenly scent.