I love social, sharing food, dont get me wrong... I love doing all the complicated cooking with massive of elements and presenting beautiful plates of food, but on a super cold Wednesday night with good friends, snow and wind howling outside, all you need is a big bowl of love, red wine, and good company. Paella, is one those dishes to me. Like risotto, but less stress, and this little beauty is no stress, pop it in the oven, cook, serve. Easy. This is taken from Orlando Murrin, a total hero of mine since he opened a boutique guest house in south west france and then published a cook book, a Table in the Tarn. This is one of my favourite books, in another life I was lucky enough to own a house in Provence, this cookbook was used again and again... my favourites gems will be published here from the book, I can promise! The beauty of a paella, almost anything goes, you can add, take away, scale up or down. Add mussels, fresh tomatoes, rosemary, or chilli flakes, or as I did last night a good glug of Sherry and a knob of butter... The only rule, as Orlando says is you must must must use paella rice.
Serves 4 generously
400g can of chopped tomotoes
600mls chicken stock
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 large onion chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
300g paella rice
4 boneless chicken thighs, halved
200g chorizo, sliced
150 raw king prawns
handful of frozen peas
1 lemon quartered.
Heat the oven 220c/200 fan. Or gas mark 8. Put the chopped tomatoes, stock, paprika and saffron in a large saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes, make sure it is pipping hot.
Put the onion and garlic into a large roasting tin or ovenproof dish and drizzle with olive oil. Mix and pop in the oven for 15 minutes until the onions begins to turn brown.
Stir in the rice, chicken, chorizo and hot stock, tomato mixture. Season well and return to the oven for 20 minutes, uncovered.
Stir in the prawns and peas and return to the oven for 5-10 minutes until everything is cooked through. Add the lemons and a really nice tip is to return it all to the oven for a few minutes for the lemons to warm through and be even more juicy. Serve immediately with a crisp green salad, and fresh bread... xxx