Paella … my favourite dish ever. I was thinking I should take advantage of my paella pan and cook at least one paella dish version once a month. Last time I made the dish with clams, serrano ham and chorizo sausage, which we really enjoyed. Here I am saying how I love paella and the last time I cooked one was three months ago. Shame on me!
I thought I would cook this time the Valenciana version. Apparently, paella originated from Valencia, a region on the Mediterranean coast of Spain, between Barcelona and Murcia. Thus, Spaniards consider paella as a regional dish contrary to how non-Spaniards (like me) view it as Spain’s national dish. Pardon the ignorance please, my Spaniard friends but I am learning.
I made this Valenciana paella with rabbit, chicken and snails. I used canned snails as fresh ones are not readily available in Australia. Also, instead of dried beans, which you have to soak overnight and boil to soften, I used canned white beans.The recipe I found was good enough to serve 8 people so I adjusted the amount of ingredients to serve a family of four. It was also recommended in the recipe to cook the dish on a round charcoal bbq instead of stove top burner. My paella pan is quite small (good for four servings) and I have cooked one before on top of a standard burner and it worked well. Based on my experience, if you are using a small pan, by all means cook the dish on stove top burner.Ingredients
- 1/2 cup white beans
- 2 medium tomatoes, diced
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 4 chicken drumsticks
- 500 g rabbit
- canned snails (15-20 pcs)
- 300g green beans
- artichoke, cut into 4 pieces
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 4 cups chicken broth
- A pinch of saffron threads
1. Heat the pan and add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. When hot, sauté the onion, garlic and tomatoes in the olive oil. Add olive oil as needed to prevent sticking. Once the onions are translucent, add the chicken, snails and rabbit. Cook, stirring constantly – about 15 minutes.
2. Add the white beans and stir. Add the rice in the form of a cross. Stir for 2-3 minutes to thoroughly coat the rice with oil and mix.
3. Add saffron to the sauce pan of broth and stir. Slowly pour broth into pan until contents are covered. Add the rest of the vegetables. Spread ingredients evenly over pan. Allow to simmer, cooking rice and beans. Add more broth if necessary.4. When rice is cooked, remove from heat and cover with aluminum foil, allowing paella to “rest” for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.I wasn’t sure whether my son will get freakish about the snails but he actually liked them. The husband and him were not such big fans of rabbit but dish was very tasty and we enjoyed it.Recipe adapted from About.com-Spanish Food