Paella: The ancient Greeks were fish & shellfish enthusiasts of the Bouilabaisse, a shellfish and fish stew prepared with herbs and white wine.
This Alicantine and Valencian seafood rice dish is based on a substantial shellfish and / or fish stock, the method passed down from generation to generation.
The fish varieties known to the classic dish are: Monkfish, scorpion, sea bream, sea bass, cod or hake and gilt head. One may add shrimps, clams, mussels, lobster and / or crab and crayfish. Although this dish is quite laborious, it is definitely worth the time and effort.
This is not a classic Paella, it is a coastal Paella.
8 oz. or 250 grams of angler or monkfish often called Poor Man´s Lobster which is a good substitute
1 cod fish head or other white flesh fish head
All purpose white flour for dredging
8 oz. or 250 grams Scampi or Crayfish, Shrimp or similar & can white firm flesh fish of other varieties can be employed instead
1/3 cup or 3 fl. oz. or 90 Ml. Evoo
1 medium size onion chopped finely
1 medium size tomato deseeded and peeled
1 tsp. Smoked Paprika ( preferably La Vera )
8 cups water or 1 3/4 quarts
Arborio Valencian Rice ...
1 pound Mussels
4 Medium Scampi or Crayfish or Shrimp
15 threads of Saffron ( place the threads in hot water for 25 minutes and steep )
3 fl. oz. of Evoo
8 oz. Large Prawns of Shrimp or Squid or Clams
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 medium sized tomato deseeded and peeled & chopped finely
1 tsp. Smoked Paprika
410 grams or 2 1/2 cups or 13 ounces Short Round Grain Arborio Rice from Valencia or Murcia, Spain
1) to make the stock, dredge the monkfish and the cod fish head with flour
2) heat the oil in a large casserole and sauté along with the crayfish and / or scampi until opaque and tender.
3) Take out of the casserole and reserve all tented
4) add the tomato and sauté for few minutes until almost tender yet firm
5) add the paprika to the water and salt to taste
6) remove the skin and the bones from the sautèed fish and shellfish
7) add these scraps to a bowl for the stock
8) peel the crayfish or scampi and shrimp and set aside
9) Crush the heads of the cryafish or shrimp in a Mortar and add to the Stock
10) cover the casserole and simmer the stock for 50 minutes to 1 hour
11) to make the rice: first steam the mussels or clams
12) take out the empty shells or shells that do not open
13) strain the liquid in a cheesecloth covered sieve and add to the broth refining process in the casserole
14) add salt to taste, and add the saffron in the water that has steeped
15) heat some Evoo in a Paellera, a paella pan; no less than 40 Cm. or 16 Inches
16) and sauté the shellfish in this order: crayfish, squid and then tomato and garlic
17) sauté gently and stir briskly and then add 5 2/3 cups shellfish fish broth or 1 1/4 quart and readjust seasoning
18) cook rapidly for 10 mins and then add the rest of the fish and seafood and turn down heat and simmer for 10 mins.
19) taste a few grains of the rice and check its readiness, and arrange the mussels or clams and shrimp on top of the rice
20) remove from heat and allow to rest 5 mins before serving with a Sangría or white sparkling wine or beer of choice
*** Photo to follow.
Edited by margcata - 8/29/12 at 2:30am