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Continued adventures with food - Lindsey Kuper [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Lindsey Kuper

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Continued adventures with food [Mar. 1st, 2006|07:31 pm]
Lindsey Kuper

The trouble with cooking is that the ingredients always look so good that I eat them before I get the chance to actually make the recipe. I've been talking about making paella for weeks, as Matt and Jenn can attest, and tonight I finally had all the ingredients and enough energy and time!

2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
2 cups canned vegetable broth
3 large plum tomatoes (about 10 ounces), seeded, coarsely chopped
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup drained canned garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
1/2 cup chopped peeled carrot
1/4 teaspoon crushed saffron threads
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 1/2 cups (about 9 1/2 ounces) couscous
6 canned artichoke hearts, quartered
Sliced red bell pepper rings
1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges
Chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and chopped bell peppers; sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and paprika and sauté 1 minute. Stir in broth and next 6 ingredients. Bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook 5 minutes to blend flavors. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Mix couscous into vegetable mixture. Cover and simmer 1 minute. Remove pot from heat. Let stand covered 5 minutes. Fluff couscous with fork. Let paella stand covered 5 minutes longer; fluff with fork again. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to serving bowl. Arrange artichoke hearts, red bell pepper rings and lemon wedges atop paella. Sprinkle parsley over and serve.

Per serving: calories, 350; total fat, 8 g; saturated fat, 1 g; cholesterol, 0.
Serves 6.

The cool thing about this dish (aside from getting to say "paella" more times in one day than in my entire life previously) is that it's beautiful from beginning to end, thanks to the green and red peppers. It tastes pretty good too, although like one of the commenters on Epicurious, I'm not sure that saffron is worth the price. It did turn the couscous a beautiful yellow, though.

Also: vegan! Although it would probably be damn good with shrimp, too.

LinkReply

Comments:
From: (Anonymous)
2006-03-02 04:57 am (UTC)

..

Yum. Promise to make Matt (http://www.matthewgifford.com) and I (http://www.milkring.com) paella sometime.

I think that's one of my new favourite words.

Jenn (http://www.milkring.com)?
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From: (Anonymous)
2006-03-02 04:58 am (UTC)

Re: ..

Oh, good lord. I even did my HTML correctly, and that turned out completely jacked up.

- Still me.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2006-03-02 06:08 am (UTC)

Re: ..

Yeah. It's intended behavior. Not your fault. I'm hoping that LJ implements a way to turn it off -- I feel it excludes the non-LJ folks who read my journal.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2006-03-02 02:46 pm (UTC)

Re: ..

You bet. It's pretty easy, although all the chopping takes a while.
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From: freyley
2006-03-02 08:34 pm (UTC)
I shall have to try this, as I haven't seen anyone succeed at making paella in this country.

And you can usually substitute dried turmeric, especially old dried turmeric, for saffron if you want yellow. It's sometimes called poor man's saffron. Fresh turmeric has flavor too (and is fun to chop, like ginger).

Oh, hi. I'm new. I'm Jeff. I found you somewhere on the web. You seemed interesting.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2006-03-02 10:46 pm (UTC)
Everyone stare at the new kid!

Thanks for the spice advice. Turmeric would give it sort of a curry flavor, right? I think that would be really good, although I'm not sure if it would be paella.
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From: freyley
2006-03-02 11:31 pm (UTC)
Staring contest! Look! A butterfly! I win.

Turmeric alone isn't going to give it much of a curry flavor. Most of what we think of as curry flavor comes from cumin and chili. It will give it a little bit of an odd flavor if it's fresh turmeric, which has flavor, or even if it's good dried turmeric (which is pretty rare). Most of the turmeric you'll find in stores barely has any flavor, and will have none if you leave it open to the air and sunlight for a day or a week. Then it's just natural food coloring.

Saffron has some flavor, though, which you'll lose. I just wouldn't call it flavor worth the price.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2006-03-03 04:22 am (UTC)
OK, so for this I want old, bad turmeric. Got it.

Seriously, thanks. I used to think that I wasn't into cooking, but now that I have a kitchen big enough to turn around in and a job that ends early enough for me to have time to shop for and cook dinner afterward, I'm realizing that I actually love it. I just don't really know what I'm doing yet, so advice is much appreciated!
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From: freyley
2006-03-03 07:20 am (UTC)
Yeah, I'm also rather in love with the kitchen, though my preference is for making food that others will eat. Perhaps some day I'll have a chance to make food with you. 'Tis fun.
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