So with our shopping list written and double-checked, off we went to gather the chorizo sausage, seafood, saffron and of course some wine for our planned feast on the deck. I must admit that, that time of the day is lovely, once you wrap your head around it. Watching the sun come up behind us like a fiery ball in the sky in the side-mirrors of the car improved this cranky girl’s disposition.
Our routine at the Market always starts the same way…Adrian gets a peameal bacon and egg on a bun and I get a fruit Danish to get our adventure going – some much-needed fuel for the market haul about to happen – especially this time. He was going to end up like a pack mule as I am restricted to lifting no more than 5 pounds for the next few months. He was going to need his strength!
We have our favourite vendors at the market and in under an hour we had our list checked off as well as the extra lovely things that always find their way into our shopping bags and the one thing we always buy…lilies – orange ones usually, but this time, the promise of beautiful deep pink ones hidden in the still tightly-closed petals. So, full shopping bags and flowers in hand, we headed home with our haul.
After a wonderful afternoon nap (I’ve gotten really good at those since being off!) we opened a bottle of wine, turned on some music and got this Paella going. I think you’re going to like this – it's flavourful, but not crazy hot – but if spicy is your thing, just amp up the heat by adjusting the spices to taste. Its also a great recipe if you have good friends coming as it makes a lot. I would suggest reading the recipe through as it is written in two parts – stovetop then bbq (although you can finish it in the oven if you prefer). Measure the ingredients in advance that you will need outside at your bbq and have them waiting on a tray ready to go for a smoother transition between stovetop and bbq.
2 tbsp olive oil
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1” chunks
2 chorizo sausage (mild or hot – you decide) sliced into ½” pieces
1 ½ cups Spanish onion, coarsely chopped
1 ½ cups red pepper, coarsely chopped
1 ½ tbsp garlic, finely chopped
¾ tsp chili flakes
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 cups arborio rice
1 796ml can diced tomatoes
1 cup white wine
2 pinches of saffron in ½ cup warm water (soak for 10 minutes or so)
1 tsp salt
3 ½ cups chicken stock
¾ cup frozen peas
8 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
¾ lb fresh mussels, cleaned and debearded
Fresh parsley, chopped for garnish
Lemon wedges for garnish
Heat oil over medium heat in large skillet and brown chicken on all sides. Remove from pan and set aside. It won’t be cooked through – it will finish cooking in the paella on the bbq.
Quickly, nip out and start your bbq and place paella pan on the grill to warm. You want it to heat to 350 degrees. Alternatively, you could finish it in a preheated 400 degree oven.
Add chorizo, onion and peppers to pan and cook about 10 minutes, until sausage has browned.
Next, add garlic, chili flakes and the smoked paprika and cook for one minute. Add the arborio rice and stir well.
Now out to the bbq you go…
Scrape contents of skillet into the paella pan then add the diced tomatoes, white wine, saffron water and cook for 3 minutes.
Add the salt, chicken stock and peas. Stir to combine and distribute chicken evenly throughout pan. Tent paella pan with foil and close lid of your bbq. Cook for 18-20 minutes.
Next, nestle shrimp and mussels within the rice and cover with foil. Close lid of bbq and cook for 12 minutes or until mussels have opened.
Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with wedge of lemon.
Serves 4-6 greedy bellies