After a beautiful Sunday service at Unity of New York I began to crave something new. Yes, this is possible. I wanted to create something I haven’t created before (and add my own spin of course). After much contemplation I decided to make a veggie paella. Traditionally paella is made with seafood and poultry or other meat products but it is chock full of veggies and made with smoked paprika, short grained rice and saffron. I found a fabulous recipe on Tienda.com which I ultimately revamped and made my own to cater to the picky-ness of my household. Here is this delectable recipe:
What you need:
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 large Vidalia onion, chopped
5 cloves of garlic, smashed and minced (a lot of garlic but I LOVE GARLIC)
1 large yellow bell pepper (or any other color)
2 tablespoons of smoked paprika (or regular if you can’t find smoked)
2 zucchini, cubed
4 large ripe tomatoes, chopped (I didn’t seed or peel, I love the liquid)
1 cup chopped Tuscan kale
2 cups frozen peas
3 cups of vegetable broth/stock (keep warm)
1 cup chopped cilantro
Juice of one lemon
5-10 strands of saffron
1 1/2 cups of short grained rice (you can use arborio, bomba, brown, or calaspara rice)
Salt and pepper to taste
How you make it:
1. In a large pan (if you have a rice pan, use that) heat the oil over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and bell pepper. Reduce heat to medium low and cook until translucent (or tender). Add smoked paprika, saffron, zucchini and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes (raise heat to medium for this).
2. Stir in rice and stock and bring to a boil. Lower heat back to medium low and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
3. Once most of the liquid is absorbed toss in the kale, peas, half of the cilantro and stir.
4. The paella is ready when the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. If you like the crunchy rice at the bottom, turn up the heat to high for just about a minute. Once you smell the toasting of the rice, shut the heat, add the lemon juice and serve.
I ate this for dinner last night and tonight! I served it with fresh tomatoes and avocado today. Delish!
This is the perfect meal for Meatless Mondays!
That’s all for now lovers!
Peace, love and veggie paella,