Toddlers & Young Children, Bigger Children, Grown Ups
My apologies for the lack of blogging action of late, we’ve had my MIL staying the last week and time has been more than a tad short. I’m hoping to get back to normal blogging soon, though we do have a line of guests coming early summer so it could be tricky. And my poor veggie patch is suffering enormously again. So much to do, and always so little time.
In case you didn’t see it I wrote a guest post for Foodies 100 which appeared on their site last week, it’s listing my Five Favourite Family Foodie Blogs. Well worthy of a read if you want to check out some other great family foodies, and there’s some truly brilliant ones around!
The essence of summer I made this paella for our balmily hot sunday dinner last weekend and it was a hit with everyone, littlies and all (and they particularly enjoyed the mussels!). Ever so impressive yet surprisingly easy to assemble and if you’ve not made one before you really must give paella a go. A perfect dish for big family gatherings or parties, or like us a special sunday lunch. I’ve listed ingredients to serve four (big) people, but double or treble up or more for larger parties. You do need a very big frying pan for any more than six people, or preferably a paella pan (I have one on my wish list!).
A great summery dish at it’s best served with ice cold vino blanco …. and maybe the odd finger bowl or two….it’s a messy business!
Enough for Four:
3 tablespoons of olive oil
a large pinch of salt & pepper
4 chicken legs or thighs (each divided into two) or 8 chicken drumsticks, free range, skin removed
100g of chorizo, sliced into 5mm slices
a large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
a red pepper, thinly sliced
120g of french green beans, sliced into 2.5 cm lengths or frozen peas
a teaspoon of sweet smoked paprika
a large pinch of saffron
170g of spanish paella rice
600ml of hot chicken stock
500g of large mussels (washed and de-bearded and any opened ones discarded)
8 or more large whole raw king prawns
lemon and parsley to serve
Rub a little salt and black pepper into your chosen chicken pieces. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a wide frying pan or paella pan on a medium heat. Fry the chicken a little on all sides until lightly golden. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Add the chorizo to the pan and cook for a couple of minutes, turning occasionally. Remove with the spoon and set aside with the chicken.
Turn the heat to low and throw in the onions and garlic to the pan. Gently saute for 5 minutes until softened. Add another tablespoon of olive oil together with the sliced pepper, beans if using ( if using peas they are added later) and smoked paprika. Cook for another couple of minutes stirring regularly.
Stir in the saffron, rice, and peas (if using) ensuring the rice has a good coating of the oil. Pour over the chicken stock, and place the set aside chicken and chorizo back in the pan. Gently bring to a simmer, and allow to bubble away for 12 minutes, stirring only occasionally.
Place the mussels evenly around the pan, pushing the shells into the rice so that they have an opportunity to cook. Cook for a further 5 minutes without stirring the paella.
Evenly place the prawns over the top and cook for a further 6 minutes (turning them over half way through), but not stirring the paella. The rice and chicken should now be tender and cooked through and liquid evaporated. Cook for a few moments longer if not.
Serve with a sprinkling of finely chopped parsley and lemon wedges….and a glass of white wine.