Sunday, January 11, 2009

One Paella with Everything Please

I needed to do food for a group of 8-10 people, so a big pan of paella came to mind. I chose to use a variety of ingredients including chicken, sausage, little neck clams, mussels and Maine lobster. The trick is to prep all ingredients ahead of time so they can be added to the rice in order not over cook, all the shellfish needs to be precooked and their liquid added to the rice cooking liquid. For 8 people I used two cups of rice in a 18 inch wide and shallow paella pan. First the short grain rice is toasted in good olive oil with shaved fennel, smoked paprika, sliced onions, chopped garlic, red and green peppers. Next the chicken and sausage go in and are browned. The next step is adding the cooking liquid which is made of chicken stock, white wine, saffron and the clam and mussel cooking juice. After the rice has absorbed most of the liquid, all the precooked shellfish are added to reheat and garnished with a squeeze of lemon and chopped parsley. The flavors are complex, rich and Delicious. Serve with a simple salad and crusty rustic bread, for wine which is a must, try a light red or white.

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