Seafood Paella- 4-6 servings
- 1 pound halibut fillets- skinned and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1/2 pound large shrimp- deveined and shell on
- 4 calamari bodies- cut into rings
- 18 small mussels- scrubbed and debearded
- 1 15 oz can shellfish stock diluted with 1 can water
- 1 red pepper- finely diced
- 1 medium tomato- finely diced
- 1 small onion- finely diced
- 6 cloves garlic- minced
- 6 scallions- finely chopped
- 2 cups short grain rice such as Arborio
- 1-2 tsp smoked paprika
- Few strands of saffron
- 2 T minced parsley
- 1-2 stalks fresh thyme leaves
- Salt to taste
- 5-8 T olive oil
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put stock and water in saucepan with the saffron. Heat to almost boiling and then reduce heat to keep broth hot.
Sprinkle salt over halibut, shrimp, and calamari and let set at room temperature for about 10 minutes. Heat 3T or so of olive oil in a 13 inch paella pan (or shallow pan of similar size) over medium high heat and quickly sauté the fish, calamari, and shrimp stirring frequently for about 2 minutes. Remove to a warm platter to rest- the seafood should not be fully cooked. Add 2T more of olive oil to pan and cook the onion, scallion and red pepper over medium high heat for about 2 minutes. Add the tomato and cook about 2 more minutes until the vegetables are softened. Add the garlic, parsley, thyme and paprika now and stir to combine- cook about 1 minute to soften the garlic. Now add the rice and stir to lightly toast the rice. You may need to add more oil if the mixture is dry and sticking to the pan.
When the rice and vegetables are all combined, add the hot broth all at once- be careful not to overfill the pan. The mixture should be at a medium boil. Stir frequently and rotate the pan to be sure the heat is evenly distributed. Add more stock- or hot water if you run out of stock- until the rice is close to al dente- it should still have some bite to it. Season with salt to taste and add the fish and all the shellfish (except the mussels) to the pan. Stir to combine. Be sure there is still enough liquid to finish cooking the rice in the oven- add more hot liquid if needed.
Arrange the mussels on top of the paella and put uncovered into hot oven for 5 minutes or so- until the mussels open. Remove from the oven and cover with foil for 5 minutes before serving. Place in center of table and let everyone serve themselves from the pan for a dramatic presentation.
Serve with tossed green salad and Spanish wine- white or even a light red.