Thursday, October 21, 2010

Culinary Adventures Around the World - Spain

I got the idea a couple of years ago that we should cook our way around the world.  I thought it would be a fun way to get us out of our dinner time rut by trying new dishes.  You can read about the details here.   We started in Ireland and so far have cooked dishes from:
  • Ireland (you can read about it here)
  • Great Britian
  • Norway
  • Russia
  • the Ukraine
  • Poland
  • Germany
  • Switzerland
  • Italy (you can read about it here)
  • France (you can read about it here)
Since Spain is next, it seemed logical that I would cook paella, one of its most famous dishes.  I did a quick google search for a recipe so I could cook it this past weekend. 

Here's the Paella recipe I used (based on this one from the Food Network)

2 chicken breasts, skinless, boneless, cut into large chunks
2 Italian sausages, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 onions, peeled and chopped
10 whole cloves of garlic, peeled (we all thought a few of them, at least, should have been chopped so that the flavour mingled more)
796 ml (28-oz) can of whole tomates
2 cups arborio rice
3 cups chicken stock (I used bouillion)
1 cup of red or white wine
3 bay leaves
2 sprig of fresh rosemary
1 red pepper, seeds removed and chopped
1 pound of shrimp, shelled and deveined (I used frozen)

1. heat oil in a frying pan and brown the chicken and sausages.  When they are cooked, remove them to a plate.
2.  add the onions to the pan (with more oil if needed) and saute until golden
3.  add the garlic and stir for a few minutes
4. add the tomatoes, breaking them up with a wooden spoon.
5.  add the rice, stock, wine, bay leaves, rosemary, red pepper, the reserved meat and the shrimp (although I added mine near the end since mine were already cooked).
6.  bring to a simmer and cook over medium low heat until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 30 minutes.  I served it with cooked peas.

We always rate the round-the-world dishes on a scale of 1-10 and I have to say that paella rated very highly.  Everyone rated the dish somewhere between 8 and 10.  The recipe I used said it would feed 4, but with 2 cups of rice it could easily have fed 8.  There was plenty left over which we had for another meal.

William is very excited that we are now leaving Europe and starting across North Africa. Months go by when I don't seem to have time or inclination to find a recipe on the internet, get the ingredients, and cook a new meal for the next country, but William has requested that I cook them a little more frequently so my goal is to try and cook a recipe from another country every 2-3 weeks.  That should mean I will be able to get to Bangladesh before I get to Bangladesh in real life.  Ha!

Morroco here we come!
Linked to Recipe Swap Party at Remodelaholic


  1. Paella is always so yummy! I can't wait to see what you end up making from the next continent!

    Kat :)

  2. That looks so good! That's a really neat idea to try recipes from around the world. What great experiences for your family.

  3. Hey Grace, thanks for commenting on my blog. And I see that you are going to the Canadian Design Blogger Meet Up, so hopefully we'll get to meet then.

    Mmmmm, I love paella. It's always been one of those dishes where I'm kind of intimidated to make (lots of ingredients!), but you made it look easy! I'm keeping this recipe for future reference!

  4. The perfect cold weather dish!!