Celebratory Foods — Vegan Paella

This is a surprisingly easy to make one-pot dish that will inspire sighs of gustatory enjoyment. Anything from fresh garden produce to holiday left overs can be used to create create an original version of this one-dish feast! The dish was named after the pan it is cooked in, a paellera, but if you don’t have a paella pan, a very large frying pan will do. Paella pans are readily available on line. This is only one possible recipe. Use your imagination and the ingredients at hand.

1 ½ cups uncooked Arborio rice.

4 ¼ cups vegetable stock

1 cup white wine

20 threads saffron per person dissolved in 1/8 cup white wine

6 tablespoons olive oil

1 veggie chorizo (soyrizo), available at most health food stores and at Trader Joe’s

2 ½ teaspoons Spanish sweet pimentón or smoked paprika (not hot) if you can’t find pimenton.

8 cloves garlic per person, minced

1 large cup diced onion

1/4 cup grated tomato (cut in half, grate and discard the skin)

1/2 sweet red or orange pepper diced

12-16 artichoke hearts

1 can check peas

1 small can cooked sweet peas

1 roasted, sweet red pepper, cut into strips

12 or so asparagus spears, steamed and cut into thirds

lime wedges for garnish

chopped cilantro for garnish

salt to taste

  1. Heat stock and wine in a separate stock pot. Crush saffron and add it to a little bit of white wine. After the saffron has soaked for about 15 minutes, add it and the 1/8 cup wine to the stock pot.
  2. Heat paella pan over medium heat, add olive oil and sauté onions and sweet red pepper until onions are translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for 3 more monutes.
  3. Add the soyrizo and cook until heated, stirring all the while.
  4. Add the rice, stirring until well coated with oil.
  5. Add the paprika and grated tomato. Stir while cooking for a few minutes.
  6. Add saffron flavored wine and hot stock. Bring to a boil while scraping the bottom of pan. By now, the rice should be level in the pan and you will not need to stir from this point on.
  7. Adjust heat to maintain a nice simmer and cook uncovered.
  8. When the rice has absorbed most of the liquid but still has a soupy appearance push the artichoke hearts into the rice.
  9. Once the rice is mostly cooked arrange the rest of the ingredients in a decorative pattern on top. During this time the rice should be caramelizing on the bottom of the pan or creating what is called the socarrat. It will make a faint crackling sound and smell toasty sweet but not burnt. Set aside to “rest” for 5-10 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, garnish with lemon wedges around the side and serve.

 

 

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