I cook paella quite a bit, though I have been told what I cook usually isn’t paella, but a rice dish!
This time I wasn’t even trying, however the end result was rather good. I admit I cheated slightly and used a Waitrose Paella Paste jar, but I think I got the cooking right as the taste and texture was reminiscent of the excellent paella I had from Riceminster last week.
It was towards the end of the month, so the fridge needed restocking and there wasn’t too much in the cupboards. I had decided to cook some cod croquettes, salmon and serve it with rice. However we didn’t have any plain (well basmati) rice left, but I did have some paella rice. I also had a jar of Waitrose Paella Paste.
I quite like the jar and when I have used it in the past it has worked well, never quite authentic, but still tasty.
As I said there wasn’t too much in the fridge, so in a large frying pan, I cooked some smoked bacon (pancetta) and a chopped red onion. I would usually use some peppers and mushrooms, but there was none in the fridge. I did check to see if I had a tin of beans I could use, but though I had tinned lentils and kidney beans, there was nothing else.
Once the onions were softened, I added the paella rice and stirred the rice around until mixed in with the onions and bacon. I then added the Waitrose Paella Paste and stirred that in.
I then added chicken stock, made using a Knorr Chicken Stock Pot, covering all the rice. I then stirred and then left alone. Well not quite, as I added some frozen peas about 10 minutes later.
I once got “told off” for stirring my paella, so now I just as advised leave it to cook.
I think what I did this time however, was not to add further stock and just let the paella cook turning down the heat slightly as the stock reduced. I did think I should add more stock, but left it alone.
I served it up and I did like how it came out. I had mine with cod croquettes and salad.
As for the taste and texture it was very similar to the paella I had from the Temple Quay market from Riceminster and those I have had in Spain. I think this was one of the best paella dishes I have cooked, certainly one of the most authentic tasting.