Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I don't really know much about paella, other than the Costanzas invited the Seinfelds over for dinner and they refused.
And with that limited knowledge I attempted to make some. In the crockpot.
I do know that paella uses saffron, and I have quite a bit of saffron in the house, thanks to a gift.
I think I got the flavors right. This tasted good, but the rice turned to absolute mush, and ended up glued to the crock. I've made rice before, and thought I knew what I was doing. I was evidently wrong.
--2 spicy sausage, cut up (I used chicken spicy Italian)
--1.5 lbs of thick fish steak (I used halibut)
--1 each of a yellow, red, orange bell pepper, cut in chunks
--1 small yellow onion, diced
--1 head of cauliflower florets
--2 T butter
--1/4 tsp kosher salt
--very healthy pinch of saffron (about 1/2 tsp)
--2 cups chicken broth
--1 cup rice (I used white. I should have used brown.)
Dump the rice and chicken broth into the crockpot and stir. Stir in the saffron and the salt. Add the butter, and chopped onion, cauliflower, and bell pepper. Add the cut up sausage and the fish to the top.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4, or until rice has absorbed the liquid and is cooked and the fish is flaky.
I cooked ours in a 6qt Smart Pot for 7 hours on low and it was too long. The rice disintegrated.
I think I put in too much liquid. I used the standard 1 cup rice to 2 cups liquid measurement, but didn't take into account the juice from the meat or vegetables. I'd like to try this again, but with brown rice and with only 1 1/2 cups of broth.
I really liked the flavor, and Adam and I ended up picking out the meat and the vegetables and got enough to eat that way. The kids had quesadillas.
Saffron has a strong smell. I needed the kitchen windows open, and today I have them open again with the fans on to air out the house. I didn't realize the smell would be quite so strong. It isn't unpleasant, but I am one who prefers her house to smell like vanilla scented candles or Glade Plug-Ins.
which means I guess I prefer chemicals. I've been totally brainwashed.