Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas Eve Paella....


Paella and Tapas were the dinner of choice here on Christmas Eve ...I may have gone a bit overboard with the addition of too much seafood...but it was delicious. I know it is not traditional to mix seafood with meat, not  in Spain anyway, but there is a bit of chicken and some beautiful chorizo in mine this time and lots of seafood. I treated myself to a new 15 inch Paella Pan ...we set the pan in the middle of the table and everyone just  dug in. My son had brought me a bag of Bomba Rice and some beautiful saffron from Spain, he was happy that I used it.  We had lovely Spanish wine to drink and made a lovely night of it. It was great fun...in fact by the time we had dinner it was 11:00PM...



This recipe is what I used and  loosely adapted from for my Christmas Eve Paella...it is from La Tienda.  It gives you a really nice starting point. I did add some dry diver's scallops, I used mussels and clams, I had some gorgeous Rock Lobster tails that I split in two, also shrimp and some boneless skinless chicken thighs. I had wonderful chorizo from D'artagnan...I also bought some authentic Piquillo peppers from Spain.  Mine served 8 with the amount of seafood I used...


Paella Mixta

This is by far the most popular paella recipe in Spanish restaurants in America. Mixing seafood, meat and chorizo is close to heresy in Valencia, but this 'Americano' version is very tasty and features a variety of flavors sure to please a crowd.
Servings: 4-6
Prep Time: 30 min
Cook Time: 1 hr.

Ingredients:

1 tsp thread saffron
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 medium onions, chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
2 pounds tomatoes, chopped
8 piquillo peppers, sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
3 chicken thighs, skinned and cut into 2 inch pieces, seasoned with salt and pepper
12 large shrimp, peeled
12 mussels (or clams)
1 lb Spanish cooking chorizo, cut into 1 inch pieces
8 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and pepper
2 cups Bomba or Calasparra rice
6 cups chicken broth
Lemon wedges

Preparation:

Add stock, paprika and saffron to a pot and heat, covered. In a separate 15" paella pan, add 2 tbsp olive oil and brown the chicken pieces and chorizo, about 5 minutes. Remove. Add the remaining olive oil and cook the onions over medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bell peppers and cook for a few minutes. Add the tomatoes and garlic and simmer for another 5 minutes, until they have a sauce-like appearance. Salt and pepper to taste.
Pour in the rice and stir until the rice is covered with the tomato mixture (known as 'sofrito'). Add chicken and chorizo pieces. Slowly add all of the broth to the paella. Stir the rice mixture around until it is evenly distributed throughout the pan. Important - do not stir after this point.
Simmer for about 10 minutes, then place the shrimp and shellfish into the mixture one-by-one, evenly distributing throughout. Simmer for another 15 minutes, or until all of the broth has been absorbed, adding extra liquid if necessary. Remove from heat, gently cover with foil and let sit for another 10 minutes. Garnish with piquillo pepper slices and lemon wedges.


This would be great fun for a New Years Eve dinner as well.  Before the Paella we had Serrano Ham, assorted Spanish cheeses, Piquillo Peppers with garlic and Spanish Olive Oil, bread, olives, Marcona Almonds...and some other things as well.         

16 comments:

  1. It is a thing of beauty and love..You picked a great pan also..Special seafood..meat..rice..saffron..I bet you were in heaven.
    Happy for you:)Happy for you.

    Happy 2012:)
    Spice Girl

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  2. Thank you my little Spice Girl! iIt was fun!
    will let you know when I am a spice girl too!
    L xoxoxo

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  3. I wish you and yours a Happy and Healthy New Year too!
    Xoxoxoxoxoxo

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  4. What a gorgeous dish! It sounds amazing...and to repeat myself...it is beautiful!

    Good food, good company make it a perfect evening!

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  5. That is wonderful to have all those goodies to work with. I really need to get a paella pan... the big skillet I use isn't quite right... I don't get that great crust that you get with a good pan.

    Have a great holiday.. happy new year!!

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  6. Thanks Kate!
    Deana...I finally got the right pan. I was using a 14 inch French skillet,and you are right,the socarrat does not come out as well with skillet...

    Thanks so much for stopping by my friends!

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  7. I just discovered La Tienda and ordered Christmas gifts for a Spanish friend in the U.S. from them. This paella looks sensational. I never thought of using piquillo peppers with it, but love the idea. I made its cousin - a seafood risotto - for Christmas eve. Happy New Year to you.

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  8. Thanks Linda!
    happy New Year to you too!
    L xo

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  9. when I worked in Spain eons ago I remember chicken in the paella..
    A paella can be anything or is that gazpacho?
    It's been a while..and so long since I've had this wonderful dish.
    Looks great.
    found you thru Nana :)

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  10. Thanks for stopping by....a paella can be whatever you want it to be....a gazpacho is a soup...I have a wonderful recipe for that here too if you are interested....
    This paella while mixed in the more American style...is how we like it...again thanks for coming to visit!

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  11. Linda! This looks amazing. We love paella so I'm going to try this one soon. Thanks for the recipe and the gorgeous photos.

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  12. absolutely beautiful dish. takes me back to my time in Basque country.

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  13. Thank you all so much...
    I am glad you stopped by!

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  14. OH My! Your paella looks so good and yummy. It looks very pretty too ! I made paella about 2 Xmases ago and it turned out great. I used a different recipe, without the mussels. I plan to make some paella later in September using this recipe with the mussels. I live in central Ohio, but I think I can get some frozen mussels at Kroger or Giant eagle.

    Take care,

    Sharon

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