As today is Father’s Day and my own Dad was busy seeing other family, I decided to be a great step-daughter and make my Stepdad his favourite fare – tapas.
Tapas is something that I love cooking and have done so many times before, but it is always a tad hectic and stressful as you are cooking so many dishes at the same time.
My menu consisted of: Ciabatta with bruschetta topping, calamari (squid rings), creamy garlic mushrooms, chorizo in red wine, salt and pepper chicken wings, slow-cooked pork belly cubes with balsamic dipping sauce, potatas bravas, chicken and prawn paella, tortilla (Spanish omlette) and broad beans y jamon. Followed by a creme catalan for dessert.
Out of all of these dishes, one I have been praised for time and again is my paella, so I thought I would share a simple recipe for it that anyone can follow …
Paella (feeds 6)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 brown onion, cubed
1 red pepper, cubed
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 large chicken breasts, cubed
1/4 of a chorizo ring, cubed
1/3 third tin of chopped tomatoes in herbs
2 tsp paprika & 1/2 tsp saffron & 3 finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes OR half pack of paella herb mix from supermarket (saffron is expensive and these usually have a great balance of flavour)
Salt & pepper to taste
300g paella rice
2 pints / 1 litre vegetable stock
2 handfuls of garden peas
300g prawns (cooked and peeled)
Add the oil to the pan and saute onions for five minutes or so until softened. Add the peppers, garlic, chicken, chorizo, tomatoes and herbs and mix well, cook for about 5-7 minutes (make sure meat is cooked through). Then add in the paella rice, stir to make sure all of the rice is coated in the paste and cook for a minute or two while you prep the stock. Add half of the stock then mix thoroughly before adding the other half. Leave this to simmer for around 20 mins – the stock should be almost gone but not quite. Then add in the peas and prawns and stir, cook for a further 5 minutes, be sure not to let the rice dry out. Serve onto plates or in dishes with lemon wedges to finish.