Christmas has been and gone. I’ve really enjoyed it this year, we had a great build up and the day itself was a feast of family and food. Cairns Farm provided us with a magnificent 20lb Free Range Bronze Turkey (which to my surprise took just 4 hours to cook!) and although we have all been gorging on leftovers there is still enough left to make this wonderful Paella for my Dad’s birthday today. Feel free to add in some leftover ham too, it will add lots of flavour.
Paella is one of the simplest ways to make a little leftover meat go a long way. It has become somewhat of a staple in my house over this past year and has been made with every cut of meat and veg imaginable. It’s quite quick to make and if kept simple, like this, there is no need to be intimidated by it. Use whatever meat you have leftover and even throw in some leftover vegetables if you have some. You can also double or triple the recipe to feed extra, just make sure your pan is big enough!
2 tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 Onion (finely chopped)
50g Sugar Snap Peas (sliced)
125g cooked Turkey (chopped/torn)
1/4 tsp Smoked Paprika
1 clove of Garlic (finely chopped)
150g Paella Rice
generous pinch of Saffron
300 ml of Turkey or Chicken Stock
100ml Tomato Passata
handful of Tinned Butterbeans
Chilli and Parsley for garnish
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
1 Put the saffron into a small ramekin or dish and add a little hot water. Set aside.
2 In a paella pan or frying pan, heat the oil and add the onion. Season with salt and pepper and cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the peas and turkey and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the paprika and garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
3 Add the rice and stir well. Add the saffron and it’s water followed by the stock, passata and butterbeans. Season well and stir. Bring to a simmer and cook over a medium/low heat for about twenty minutes without stirring*, until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. If the liquid is absorbed too quickly, just add a little boiling water when required.
4 When cooked, scatter over some chopped chilli and parsley and serve.
*Note: The paella isn’t stirred in order to create the “socarrat”, the caramalised bits of rice, meat and veg at the bottom of the pan. I reckon this is the best part of any paella but if you have the heat too high it may burn and be inedible, practice makes perfect!