Thursday, May 6, 2010

Seafood Paella

So, I don't have any saffron... which probably means it's illegal for me to actually call this "paella".  Oh well.  It was tasty, and its my blog, and I can call it whatever I want.  So there.

This is another "adapted" recipe from Food & Wine.  I just love that mag!  Coincidentally, they apparently adapted it from Jose Andres at Jaleo in Washington DC.  I've been there!  Awesome sangria :)  It's a must-try if you're ever in the DC area.

This recipe only took about 30min to make and requires very little attention.  Yay for that!

Ingredients (4 servings... for leftovers):
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 bag of mixed seafood (from Trader Joe's; includes shrimp, squid, and baby scallops)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup arborio rice
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 cups homemade shrimp stock (you can use bottled clam broth from the store as a sub)
2+ cups water

In a large, deep skillet, I added the oil over med-high heat until shimmering. Added the seafood next and seasoned with S & P. Let this menagerie cook over high heat until lightly browned on one side, ~2 minutes the transferred the seafood to a plate. Now, I neglected to defrost my seafood ahead of time so it didn't "brown" per se and I ended up with a little more "liquid" in my pan at the end of it... but no matter 'cuz the rice was going in next anyway. 

Next I added the rice to the skillet and cooked, stirring, until opaque, ~2-4 minutes. Next in goes the tomato paste, paprika, garlic (and saffron if you have it) and cook, stirring, until the rice is toasted and sizzling, about 2 minutes. Added the shrimp stock and water, brought to a boil and cooked until the rice was still a bit crunchy and about half of the broth was absorbed, 10-12 minutes. I then lowered the heat to a simmer and continued to cook, presumably until the rice is tender and the liquid is soupy (F&W claims another 8min).  This is NOT what happened for me.  I kept having to add more and more water because the rice was absorbing it all but still seemed too crunchy for me... at least 10-15min later.  I finally got too hungry to wait (and I felt like my sauce was losing flavor) so I decided to just be done with it at this point.  I stirred in the seafood mixture and continued the simmer until everything was cooked through ~2 minutes longer.  I topped it off with some chopped cilantro.

This was very flavorful, but all the additional water seemed to mute it far from where it started.  Also, I still think I could have cooked the rice longer.  And next time I will add some sliced red bell peppers and peas to boost the nutrients and colors.  Reed had a glass of the 2009 Carelli 34 Malbec.  I had water because I'm still recovering from some kind of horrible stomach bug that left me violently ill Wednesday.  Both beverages were delicious with dinner :)

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