Catholic Recipe: Paella II
Paella is a typical Spanish dish and is traditionally cooked in a "paellera"—a round flat pan with two handles—which is then put on the table. It is normally made using shellfish but can also be made with chicken or rabbit. In many Spanish villages, especially in coastal areas, they use a giant paellera to cook a paella on festival days which is big enough to feed everybody. A paella is very flexible so if you don’t have the exact ingredients or if you find some of them hard to get hold of, substitute them for something similar. Getting fresh shellfish can be a problem, but you can always use frozen fish and use fish stock instead of water to increase the flavour.
There are literally hundreds of ways to cook a paella and every cook has their own favourite recipe.
In a large casserole heat 1/3 cup olive oil and in it cook 1/2 cup grated onion for two minutes, stirring. Add the pork and chicken and saute for 5 minutes stirring. Then add garlic, tomatoes, herbs, salt, pepper and saffron. Cover and cook over medium heat about 25 minutes, stirring from time to time.
Meanwhile, steam the mussels and clams in 1 cup water until they open, about 5 minutes. Discard any that do not open. Reserve the mussels, clams, and cooking liquor and discard the shells. Strain the liquor.
Add the green peppers and green beans or artichokes to the casserole. Cook covered 5 to 10 minutes longer.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining olive oil in a paella pan and cook the remaining 1/2 cup grated onion 1 minute. Add the rice and cook stirring until all the grains are coated, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the mussel and clam liquor plus 7 cups water to the casserole. Bring to a boil. Slowly pour the bubbling sauce over the rice. Then slide the remaining contents of the casserole evenly over the sizzling rice. Add the red peppers, shrimp, chorizo slices, mussels, and clams. Stir once.
Cook uncovered over brisk heat until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Rotate and shake the pan from time to time to cook the rice evenly. Allow the contents to rest 5 minutes before serving.
Serve directly from the pan with the lemon wedges.