There’s A Party in My Paella

I’ve never made paella before so my strategy was to read as many recipes as I could find and then distill them into the easiest possible procedure. I ended up printing out 4 recipes that looked promising.

I worked on my story all day Sunday and the last thing I wanted to do at the end of the day was cook something more complicated than frozen pizza but I had all the ingredients and I was hungry so I went for it. None of the recipes was easy and they all seemed to demand that I get a lot of pans dirty and do a lot of processes and I was having none of that. Try to spot my short cuts.

I warmed up my new pan and, in this order, I threw in: chopped onion and red bell pepper, cubed chicken breasts, chopped spicy Italian sausage (no chorizo and I didn’t want to go to another store) and then a half bag of Trader Joe’s frozen mixed seafood surprise which what they get at the end of a fishing expedition when they clean out the bottom of the boat.

I realized I should have saved the vegetables for later but never fear. When done, I scraped all this stuff into a bowl and set aside in the warm oven and then made the sofrito which is onions, garlic, tomatoes and in my case, the last 3 spoonfuls of salsa in the container because it needed to be finished up. Once that smelled delicious I added my rice and mixed everything together and then added my saffron infused Swanson’s chicken broth. I had bought smoked Spanish paprika specifically because I thought I needed it for paella and none of my recipes called for it so I added 1 teaspoon.

I waited until the cooked rice started pushing up in the middle of the pan and then spread the meat mixture plus some peas and shelled edamame because why not? over the pan. Then I moved the pan around on the burners to make sure it was getting thoroughly heated and after a half hour I turned the heat down and covered with foil and let it sit for a bit.

Keep in mind that I had been writing since I woke up so in addition to cooking I was running back and forth folding laundry and scrubbing the bathroom sink and generally enjoying the life of a woman who has it all (except for children, pets and a ski chalet in the Austrian alps).

The end result: delicious! My recipe needs work including being less timid with the saffron and paprika and I think I have some hot paprika somewhere and if I can find it, I’ll throw some of that in next time, too.

Meanwhile, I was so tired on Sunday night I read 2 pages of my book and then turned out the light and then tossed and turned ALL NIGHT LONG. It was clinically awful. I thought it was because Bob wasn’t home but three people in my office reported terrible sleep the same night so now I think the aliens are wearing us down before they start their invasion.

Last night I saw Marjane Satrapi at Arts and Lectures and she was fabulous. I very highly recommend Persepolis 1 and 2. But that means that I left the house at 6:30a and didn’t get home until 9:30p which is close to the world’s longest day.

Now it’s Tuesday and I’m feeling tired and frazzled but apparently still capable of writing a long rambling blogpost. Is this a marketable skill?

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