Cooking with Saffron: Seafood Paella for 4 Hungry People

| December/January 2011

  • Photo by Povy Kendal Atchison

Paella can made with chicken or rabbit, seafood, a mixture of both, or with a variety of vegetables only. However you make it, the basic method and the saffron ratio is the same. If you are served bright yellow paella that stains your fingers bright yellow, food coloring is the culprit.

• 1 pound mussels
• 1/4 pound small prawns
• 2 small squid or 1/2 pound squid rings
• 1/2 pound baby clams
• 8 langoustines or large prawns
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 onion, chopped
• 1/2 red pepper, cut into strips
• 3 cloves garlic 
• 3 peeled, chopped tomatoes
• 1 tablespoon paprika
• 4 cups rice
• 8 to 12 cups Fish Stock (see recipe on the next page)
• 12 saffron threads

1. Clean mussels and boil in a pan until they open. Strain, remove one half of the shell, set aside and reserve the water for Fish Stock. Peel prawns and set the leftovers (heads, tails and skins) aside for Fish Stock, too.

2. Heat olive oil in a paella pan or large skillet and lightly fry squid, langoustines and peeled prawns. Remove from pan and set aside.

3. Sauté onion, red pepper, garlic, tomatoes and paprika for 7 or 8 minutes.

4. Add rice, season, cook for a minute or two, stirring all the time. Add stock (start with 8 cups) and the saffron.

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