Paella, a reminder of holidays in the sun and the waves lapping on the shores of the Mediterranean, is easy to make, yet spectacular to serve. It can be cooked on the stove-top or in the oven. Cooking in the oven gives it a tasty crust which is irresistible. Saffron strands lend a unique colour and flavour. If you want even more authenticity you can add slices of spicy chorizo sausage.
- 225g monkfish – cut in chunks
- 225g squid – cut in rings
- 12 prawns tails – well washed
- 16 mussels – well washed
- 16 clams – well washed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
- 1 medium onion – finely chopped
- 1/2 a red pepper – finely chopped
- 1/2 a green pepper – finely chopped
- 4 tomatoes – skinned and chopped
- 55g peas
- Good pinch saffron – soak in 150ml water
- Pinch paprika
- 600ml fish or chicken stock
- 225g Basmati rice.
Heat oil. Add onion and garlic. Cook until onion becomes transparent, then add paprika and peppers.
Add tomatoes, saffron plus soaking liquid.
Add rice and cook for 3-4 minutes.
Pour on stock and cook for 5 minutes without stirring.
Add monkfish and squid, stir and cook for 2 minutes.
Arrange shellfish on top, placing clams and mussels hinge side down.
Cook uncovered in a moderate oven 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 for 15 minutes or on hob over a medium heat.
Add peas and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes. Allow the dish to stand for 10 minutes before serving.
You can also add cod, pollock, lobster tails, cockles.