Would Love Recipes for Paella

ElizabethB

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In '94 I had spent 3 weeks in Spain courtesy of Uncle Sam (USNR annual training). I was stationed in Rota. I had a lot of Liberty (time off) and a rental car. I changed my return flight and spent an additional 4 days in Madrid.
I had Paella both in Rota and Madrid. Heaven on earth. I have researched recipes on line but would love your input. No I am not making Paella for the challenge. I want to make it because - well I just want to!
I could not believe how inexpensive everything was. I had the Paella in Rota at a nice restaurant. It was part of a five course meal - $25. :woot:
There were five of us from my Reserve Unit. Three of us hung out together.
On of the guys stationed in Rota (Active Duty) took us Tapa Hopping. That was lots of fun and a good introduction to a variety of flavors.
Most evenings we ate a small neighborhood restaurant. Only 10 tables inside but a glass front wall that opened up under a canopy for al fresco dining. You entered from a tiny bar - 4 or 5 bistro tables and a fish case featuring the catch of the day. Pick your fish. The fish was available either fried or broiled with a side of fries/chips and a salad - $8. I ate fish that I had never heard of before. Fried or broiled it was always cooked to perfection. Once a week we returned to the other restaurant - I had to have more Paella.
 

caseydog

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Paella is one of those dishes people get heated over. So, I would decide if you would want the recipe to be "authentic" or just the way someone's mom made it.

I've had Paella in Salamanca and Barcelona. It was wonderful both times. I've only had it at one place in the US that seemed to be like what I had in Spain. That was The Versailles Restaurant on Calle Ocho in Miami -- a famous Cuban restaurant.

CD
 

epicuric

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The dining experience you describe is typical Mediterranean, to this day. I can't help,with a recipe for paella, I'm sorry. We do cook it, but its usually just using up ingredients we have to hand. Basics are rice, chicken stock, diced veg (onion, peppers, peas), protein (shellfish, chicken, rabbit etc) seasoning (saffron, cayenne pepper, paprika, garlic), and let it stick to the pan. I found this photo of one I posted here two years ago:
41064
 

morning glory

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I'll dig out my recipe - I thought I'd posted it but apparently not. In fact, I could enter it for the current Recipe challenge. In my opinion there is one key ingredient - saffron.
 

The Velvet Curtain

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So many different versions from all over Spain, depending on geography. In the Northern mountains it's made with rabbit, on the plains it's chicken and of course seafood on the coast.
I favour a chicken and prawn version with chorizo. It's not far from a jambalaya recipe but using smoked paprika instead of Cajun spices.
Can you get your hands on proper Spanish paella rice? It's not the same with plain long grain rice.
 

Mountain Cat

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I had paella in Spain as a teen (when we accompanied Dad for part of a summer between semesters when he was on a series of overseas business trips. It was great! Dad liked paella enough that he made it when we got home. He made it (I think) fairly authentically - but he was never one to follow an exact recipe on anything, or to make anything twice the same way - but I suspect that there's no one set recipe anyways, as long as you'd work with foods normally found in Spain.

I've yet to make it myself, but it is something I'd like to try sometime. It is just a little harder for me to find the mix of seafood these days. Yes, I know it can be made without, but the charm for me is at the very least, seafood in it.
 

The Velvet Curtain

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Ok, this one is from ATK/CC/CI*

Cook’s Illustrated Paella

They also have one you can do on the outdoor grill, but I can't remember if you're a griller or not.


*America's Test Kitchen/Cook's Country/Cook's Illustrated
That's quite close to my version, except I add fresh diced tomatoes instead of tinned.
 

caseydog

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If America's Test Kitchen made the recipe, it is probably wrong. They are focused on easy home cooking recipes, and seem to have zero interest in authenticity.

I did a search on José Andrés and Paella, and got a lot of hits for different kinds of paella -- meat, seafood, etc. You might find something you like that way -- he's a Michelin starred Spanish chef.

Also, it is my understanding you can make paella with seafood or with meat, but not both at the same time -- like an authentic Cajun gumbo. It is my understanding, also, that using chorizo in a paella will get you an earful in Spain -- ask Jamie Oliver.

CD
 
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Mountain Cat

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If America's Test Kitchen made the recipe, it is probably wrong. They are focused on easy home cooking recipes, and seem to have zero interest in authenticity.

I did a search on José Andrés and Paella, and got a lot of hits for different kinds of paella -- meat, seafood, etc. You might find something you like that way -- he's a Michelin starred Spanish chef.

Also, it is my understanding you can make paella with seafood or with meat, but not both at the same time -- like an authentic Cajun gumbo. It is my understanding, also, that using chorizo in a paella will get you an earful in Spain.

CD
Caseydog, I didn't want to say that, but yeah, I don't trust ATK for anything remotely "world" related.
 

TastyReuben

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If America's Test Kitchen made the recipe, it is probably wrong. They are focused on easy home cooking recipes, and seem to have zero interest in authenticity.
I don't think they're ever trying to shoot for "authenticity" (a fool's errand IMO, anyway), they're trying to duplicate a working version of a recipe using ingredients readily available to the home cook here in the US (it is America's Test Kitchen, after all), so they find suitable substitutes for that unique Italian dried meat or hard-to-find French cheese.

I don't find their recipes easy at all...well, ok, they're not necessarily hard, but they're exceedingly fussy. If I have one criticism of their method, it's that. They'll manage to dirty every bowl and baking sheet you have in the kitchen, in an effort to get something as close to what they're trying to emulate, within the confines of using ingredients that are accessible to the average home cook.

That said, I've made probably hundreds of their recipes, I have one of their compilation cookbooks and dozens of their recipes pulled off their website, and whether it's "authentic" or not, and whether it's a bit too involved or not, I can't find fault with the result. I can't think of a single one of their recipes that turned out bad, or "ick, not making that again."
 

caseydog

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That said, I've made probably hundreds of their recipes, I have one of their compilation cookbooks and dozens of their recipes pulled off their website, and whether it's "authentic" or not, and whether it's a bit too involved or not, I can't find fault with the result. I can't think of a single one of their recipes that turned out bad, or "ick, not making that again."
This goes back to my first post here. What is your goal, to make an authentic paella, or just a yellow rice dish that tastes good, but wouldn't fly in Spain.

For me, if I'm going to go to the trouble of making a paella, it better be the real thing. That's just my nature. Like I said, what's your goal?

CD
 

The Velvet Curtain

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If America's Test Kitchen made the recipe, it is probably wrong. They are focused on easy home cooking recipes, and seem to have zero interest in authenticity.

I did a search on José Andrés and Paella, and got a lot of hits for different kinds of paella -- meat, seafood, etc. You might find something you like that way -- he's a Michelin starred Spanish chef.

Also, it is my understanding you can make paella with seafood or with meat, but not both at the same time -- like an authentic Cajun gumbo. It is my understanding, also, that using chorizo in a paella will get you an earful in Spain -- ask Jamie Oliver.

CD
I've had paella with chorizo in Spain, in Bilbao. I've also had a chicken and mussel paella in Barcelona where you definitely wouldn't add chorizo or saffron for fear of being lynched (or anything else that might give it some flavour, my word it was bland).
 

medtran49

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We make a Cuban style paella, which would harken back to the aforementioned Versailles. We use chicken, shrimp, Caribbean lobster, chorizo (fresh, not dried, though dry would be more authentic, Cuban remember, simply because we prefer the fresh), clams usually, though have used mussels, roasted red bells, garlic, onions, peas, cumin, saffron, and either chicken or shrimp stock from the shells (or a combo). Rice is Valencia, which you may be able to get at grocery. Don't have a recipe, but could sit down with Craig and come up with one, as we always cook this together.

I did find some Bomba rice locally, but haven't used it yet.
 
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