In this beautiful dish jet-black mussels, pale gray clams, and vibrant red lobster tails lie on a bed golden saffron rice, surrounded by chopped tomato and green peas, its flavor enhanced by the addition of squid rings and an assortment of peppers.
Yield: Serves 4
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 3 tablespoons saffron threads
- Light vegetable oil cooking spray
- 1 cup chopped onion (1 medium onion)
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1 banana pepper, trimmed and cut into strips
- 1 red bell pepper, trimmed and cut into strips
- 1 yellow bell pepper, trimmed and cut into strips
- 3 cups hot chicken stock, fat skimmed off
- 6 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
- ½ cup squid rings
- ½ pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 12 mussels, scrubbed
- 12 littleneck clams, scrubbed
- Four 3-ounce freshwater lobster tails, or two 6-ounce lobster tails cut in half
- ½ cup canned sliced artichoke hearts
- 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 1 cup chopped tomato (1 medium tomato)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Put the white wine and saffron threads in a small bowl and set aside.
Preheat a large, heavy paella pan or frying pan for about 1 minute over medium-high heat. Spray it 4 times with the vegetable oil. Sauté the onion for 2 to 3 minutes, until limp. Add the rice and sauté for about 1 minute, until golden. Add the wine and saffron and stir until the liquid is completely absorbed. Stir in the peppers. Add the hot chicken stock ¼ cup at a time, stirring until absorbed. Keep the stock over low heat. When only ½ cup of the chicken stock remains to be added, stir in the chicken. With the last addition of stock, stir in the squid and shrimp. Turn the burner off. The rice should be tender.
Stand the mussels and clams upright in the rice mixture, joint down. Tuck the lobster tails into the rice, shell down. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the mussel and clam shells open, 8 to 10 minutes.
Scatter the artichoke, peas, and tomato over the paella and bake for 2 to 3 minutes more.
Place the paella in the center of the dinner table and allow the guests to serve themselves.
© 1994 Rosie Daley
Saffron threads are loosely measured, not packed down so 3 tablespoons is not too much. However, if they’re too expensive, use less or leave them out entirely.
Fat per serving = 4.3 grams
Calories per serving = 477