Paella has always been one of my favourite dishes and I remember as a kid my Dad would make the biggest batch of the stuff in the summer; making it in his giant paella dish in the garden whilst listening to reggae music (I know, not a Spanish tradition but he made it work!). He’d fill it to the brim with seafood, chicken, chorizo, peas and lots of lemon and garlic and I used to get through platefuls!
Of course since following the low FODMAP diet I haven’t been able to enjoy it exactly how he used to make it, and unfortunately I had to miss out when visiting Barcelona last year, which was utterly heartbreaking. However, after a few go’s of adapting Dad’s recipe I’ve managed to get pretty close to perfecting a tummy friendly version and it’s now been added to Ross’s top five favourites!
Also, we don’t do things by halves in our house so decided to go all out with the Spanish theme; putting our fave holiday clothes on (bare in mind it was peeing it down with rain at the time) playing spanish music, and drinking a modified low FODMAP version of Sangria – red wine, cranberry and raspberry juice, a touch of lemonade and lots of fruit and mint.
Notes: 1) We are absolute piglets so although I say the recipe is for two, you could probably easily serve it for four normal-eaters. 2) I used a paella dish as Ross got me one for Christmas, however I used to use a big wok and it worked fine! 3) This recipe is for a seafood version but you can add chicken or whatever you fancy really!
If you’re trying it at home please don’t forget to take some pics and send them to @thetummydiaries – I’d love to see them!
– 250g paella rice
– 150g green beans, trimmed
– 150g tinned tomatoes
– half a red pepper, half an orange pepper chopped into cubes
– garlic oil (I use a combo of garlic infused olive oil and frylight spray)
– 700ml chicken stock (I use knorr stock in the glass jar as no onions or garlic)
– 2 lemons cut into fours
– 1 tbsp paprika
– handful of coriander
– handful of fresh parsley, cut up including the stalks
– pinch of saffron
– pinch of chilli powder
– salt and pepper
– 100g diced pancetta
– 1 bag of fresh mussels from the seafood counter, de-bearded
– mix of seafood (I defrosted half of a mixed bag of frozen prawns, calamari and mussels from Tesco’s)
1. add a couple of sprays of garlic oil to your paella dish/wok and chuck in your peppers and pancetta on a medium-high heat until the peppers are softened.
2. add your rice, stock, chilli powder, paprika, tinned tomatoes, saffron, 1 tbsp garlic infused oil and salt and pepper.
3. turn up the head at stir until all of your rice is covered. squeeze in the juice of one lemon and pop the remainder of the slices into the dish, adding in the parsley and then turning back down to medium.
4. leave for 12 minutes, add in the green beans and after a few more minutes the rice should look mostly cooked. if it dries out a bit add a splash more of water, but of a crusty layer forms on the edges that’s fine, it tastes delish!
5. press the mussels into the rice, stirring in the rest of the seafood after a couple of minutes. it should take around 5-8 minutes for the mussels to open up. once they have, add the remainder of your parsley and a tiny pinch of coriander then serve up with some fresh lemon wedges (I also add grated parmesan!)