Making Paella con La Furia Roja

I am breaking in my new paella dish today by making a chicken and chorzio paella. Every recipe I looked at was different in technique and style, so I just combined them! I am making a sofritto/tomato base (combined from recipes from Jose Andres and Judy Rogers’ books) by grating tomato halves and discarding the skins, then I thinly sliced onions on the mandoline, then minced them finely. I sauteed the onions in some olive oil, added some garlic slices, ground saffron, bay leaf, chili de arbol and S&P. Then I added the tomatoes sweet paprika and smoked paprika, and a pinch of sugar and cooked all the water out.

I borrowed my next move from the Spanish caterers at our wedding reception. I heated some oil, put in some whole garlic cloves, large pieces of red bell pepper (poquillos are best, but I didn’t have any) and I browned the chicken legs with it. I removed the garlic, mashed it into a paste, and I peeled and sliced the bell peppers. I added the rice (Spanish Bomba rice is recommended, I used short grain Cal Rose rice), and chicken stock (to which I added some saffron), the garlic and peppers, and slices of real Spanish chorizo.

By the way: it was almost halftime in a friendly match between the Spanish national soccer team and Argentina. Argentina was in the lead, 3-0. As I am trying not to stir the paella (which was futile), Luis is yelling lots of colorful Spanish phrases at the TV that we have not yet learned in class.

In the end, the paella tasted fantastic, but was far from a perfect one. Here were my problems: I think the pan was a little too big for one burner, and too small for two. With one burner, the outside rice didn’t cook as quickly as the center. With two burners, I ended up with two hotspots instead of one. I broke one of the paella rules, I stirred. Several times. What I ended up with was an almost risotto like consistency, with lots of tasty brown bits on the bottom. Any suggestions?

This entry was posted in Cooking, Paella, Soccer, Spanish. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Making Paella con La Furia Roja

  1. It sounds like you wound up with something creamy and soft, closer to an arroz. Indeed you will achieve better result with bomba or Calasparra. These rices ripen slowly and thus are capable of absorbing large amounts of water without throwing off starch (as compared to, say the premier rices of Italy) and degrading. Because these rices are virtually dehydrated during the course of their long growing seaon, they need more water to cook than other short grain varieties. Until you get your hands on rice from Murcia try decreasing your liquid volume by one cup for each cup of rice.

    Have you tried a diffuser?? Or if you have a large cast iron griddle, place that across the two burners to make good use of their heat without hot spots. Give the griddle time to heat evenly. And rather than stirring, (isn’t that the cook’s ultimate temptation?), shake and rotate your pan. But one thing for sure, do what I do. Make it again. And again.

  2. Pingback: His and Hers Paella | Bree's New Blog: El Segundo

  3. Pingback: Paella on the Grill | Bree's New Blog: El Segundo

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