Recipe: Paella with a Comforting Twist

It’s that time of year when we’re all in a bit of a slump. If you’re anything like me you probably spend a large proportion of January and February dreaming of the perfect summer holiday to get you through the cold nights. One of the most popular holiday destinations for us Brits is Spain, so to get people in the mood for the coming summer months, I’ve been challenged by Destinology to create a Spanish recipe. When thinking of Spanish cuisine one of my favourite dishes, Paella, comes to mind. However, since Paella is such a summery meal, I thought I’d try and create the same flavours in a dish that was a bit more comforting for the cold British evenings! In this paella the rice is sticky and gooey, making it a really warming and filling meal but with those summery Spanish flavours.

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Ingredients (Serves 4):

1 Pint Water

1 Chopped Onion

400g Risotto/Alborio Rice

4 Garlic Cloves

1 tsp Paprika

1 tsp Cayenne Pepper

1 tsp Hot Chilli Powder

4 Tomatoes, Chopped

150g Green Beans

300g Raw King Prawns

400g Mussels

2 tsp Chopped Parsley

  1. Start off by frying the chopped onion and crushed garlic in a bit of olive oil. After two minutes add the rice and the spices to the pan and fry on a high heat for another two minutes.
  2. In the meantime, boil the pint of water. Then add 3 quarters of it to the onion and rice.
  3. Once the pan has calmed down and is bubbling away, add the chopped tomatoes and chopped green beans. Cook for around 15 minutes, or until the water has reduced.
  4. After the water has reduced, add the prawns to the rice. Cook until the prawns are pink (around 10 minutes), adding a bit more of the left-over water whenever the rice starts to stick to the pan.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the mussels according to their packaging (usually under 5 minutes in the microwave).
  6. Once the rice is sticky and gooey, and the prawns are fully pink, serve onto a plate. Add the cooked mussels on top and garnish with the chopped parsley.

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Of course, whether it’s cold here in Britain or not, no Spanish meal is complete without sangria! To make a really simple sangria mix 3 parts Spanish red wine to 1 part smooth orange juice. You can also add some orangeade or lemonade to make it less strong if you’d prefer! Add half a chopped orange and slices of half a lemon, add to the pitcher and let them infuse into the drink before serving. Serve in glasses over ice!

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*The cost of the ingredients for this meal was covered by Destinology to help me create this recipe.

 

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