2013-08-05

Paella, Meghli [Chef Nadia Masanat]

Paella
Serves 2 generously

3 tbsp olive oil
½ Spanish onion, finely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 small yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
½ fennel bulb, cut into strips
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 bay leaves
¼ tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp ground turmeric
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup Calasparra rice (or short grain paella rice)
6 ½ tbsp orange juice
1 tsp saffron threads
Salt
2 cups boiling vegetable stock
¾ cup shelled fava beans (fresh or frozen)
12 plum tomatoes, halved
5 small grilled artichokes in oil from a jar, drained and quartered)
15 pitted kalamata olives, crushed or halved
2 tbsp roughly chopped parsley
4 lemon wedges


Heat up the olive oil in a paella pan, or a large shallow skillet, and gently fry the onion for 5 minutes. Add the bell peppers and fennel and continue to fry on medium heat for about 6 minutes, or until soft and golden. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.

Add the bay leaves, paprika, turmeric and cayenne to the vegetable and stir well. Then add the rice and stir thoroughly fir 2 minutes before adding the juice and saffron. Boil down for a minute, then add the stock and 1/3 teaspoon salt. Reduce the heat to the minimum and simmer very gently for about 20 minutes, or until most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. Do not cover the pan and don’t stir the rice during cooking.

Meanwhile, pour plenty of boiling water over the fava beans in a bowl and leave for a minute, then drain well and leave to cool down. Now squeeze each bean gently to remove the skin and discard it.

Remove the paella pan from the heat. Taste and add more salt if needed but without stirring the rice and vegetables much. Scatter the tomatoes, artichokes and fava beans over the rice and cover the pan tightly with foil. Leave to rest for 10 minutes.

Take off the foil. Scatter the olives on top of the paella and sprinkle with parsley. Serve with the lemon wedges.



Meghli

Ingredients
1 cup powdered (ground) rice
9 cups water
9 Tbs. sugar
1 Tbs. cinnamon
1 Tbs. caraway powder
1 Tbs. aniseed powder
1 cup coconuts, grated, half for the meghli and the other half for decoration
Peeled pistachios, almonds and pine nut, soaked in water overnight, for decoration
Preparation
1. Dissolve the rice in water and put in a heavy thick-bottomed saucepan.
2. Put the pan over heat and mix with a wooden spoon to avoid the rice sticking to the bottom of the pan.
3. Add the sugar and bring to the boil. When the content starts to boil and bubbles appear on the surface of the meghli, reduce the heat to avoid burning the hands and continue mixing.
4. Once the meghli has thickened, mix in the spices and half the coconuts.
5. Put off the heat and empty into custard cups. Leave to cool.
6. Decorate with grated coconuts, pistachios, almonds and pine nuts.
7. Serve at room temperature..

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