Wednesday, 27 November 2013

You've just been Paella-ed

One of the big TV cooking shows this summer was 'Save with Jamie' from The Naked Chef himself... Mr Jamie Oliver. An approach to show you how you can cook some awesome meals using left overs, clever frozen foods and some help from the spice & herb cupboard.

Using this as part of my inspiration and wanting to get rid of some left over roast chicken, I decided to create my cheap but delicious Paella. There is nothing fancy about this dish but the mixture of ingredients pack a punch. You can of course pimp it out and add in some fresh plump mussels, prawns with their shells on, whole squid, you name it. The world is your oyster as they say. I made over the top, extra special version for New Year's Eve just gone and it went down a treat. Thats the beauty of this humble dish, you can dress it up and dress it down to suit your budget and the occasion.

This little dish uses a lot of cheaper ingredients- frozen seafood, left over green beans, left over roast chicken and a mixture of paella rice and arborio rice. Basically what ever was hanging around in my fridge, freezer and cupboard.

The chorizo sausages came from the BBC Good Food Show and were the basis of my inspiration for the dish.

To make this loveable cuddle of a dish that warms those tootsies on these cold nights -for 2 hungry- you will need:

1 small onion
2 cloves garlic
3 rashers bacon
3 chorizo sausage or about 120g of the air dried stuff ( I always get more than I need as Shh, I like to have a little munch along the way)
200g paella rice
glass white wine
1tbsp tomato puree
1tsp paprika
500ml chicken stock
1 red pepper
handful green beans or frozen peas
couple handfuls of frozen mixed seafood.
lemon juice

Start by sautéing the onions and garlic until soft.

Then add the chorizo meatballs (chunks depending on what type you are using) and bacon.

once the onions are soft and the meatballs are releasing that wonderful golden colour add in your paella rice and give it a good stir. You want your rice to be covered in all that delicious oil.

Then add your stock and wine, bit at a time.

Whilst doing this you can also mix in your tomato puree and paprika.

Dice your pepper and chuck it in with the simmering mix.

The mixture should be bubbling gently on a medium low heat.

After about 15 minutes of the rice mixture simmering (make sure you stir every so often so it docent stick to the bottom) add your chicken, seafood and halved beans.

Cook for a further 5 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is cooked through.

Look at that- heaven. I  just love the colour that chorizo adds to dishes, a sort of golden hue of love.

At this point I like to add some of this

This little fellow adds that punch of flavour with out taking anything away from the dish.  It adds that 'Je ne sais quoi' to dishes that is often missing something.

Once all ready, add some lemon juice- bottled stuff is fine and season to taste.

Then plate up and relish that warmth inside your belly. This really is Winter's new best foodie friend.

Enjoy xxxx

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