Paella may be the world famous Spanish rice dish but it is not generally cooked in the family kitchen. It is cooked out in the open or ordered in a restaurant. Spanish homes are not large as a rule and domestic kitchens don’t have the burner size to attempt a proper paella. Instead they cook slightly soupier dishes — simply called arroz. I found myself explaining this particular version to the staff one day and was scratching my head trying to find an Australian comparison. ‘It’s fast to make and it’s comfort food’, I explained. ‘It’s a family favourite, the Aussie version would be …’ I was struggling for words. ‘Bangers and mash!’, shouted Andy from the bar. He gets it right everytime.
In this recipe, the flavour of saffron and the addition of prawn shells makes a lovely rich dish that is both fulfilling to eat and rewarding to share. Dig in.