Don't get me wrong, taste-wise it was spot on and brought many good memories of sunny Spain back, but the texture of the rice wasn't as good as it should have been.
2 key factors made it an 8 out of 10: the wrong type of rice and too much stock.
You see, I had to make it before hand and reheat with extra stock as I wouldn't have time to make it fresh and serve it there and then-mistake number one.
I went to the supermarket to get some paellla rice. They were fresh out and because I was short of time, I decided to use Arborio rice-mistake number two.
I've tweaked the recipe I'm sharing with you here and I can assure you that it will be a 10 out of 10 if you follow the steps to the letter.
However, this made me think about how overconfident we can get in the kitchen at times.
I've made paella hundreds of times before, and each time it came out tasting amazingly. I tried to be resourceful on this occasion only to realise that I could actually do with some cookery lessons.
Just to learn how to be able to adapt flavours and ingredients, be creative and successful under pressure.
Yep, I could do with some cookery lessons.
So that brings me to the competition.
I heard through the grapevine about this competition which sounds like an amazing opportunity to get lessons from an excellent pro. I know the chances of winning are slim but someone needs to be the winner, right?
I've entered the competition and I suggest you do too. It's really simple. All you have to do is watch the recipes, which we all enjoy doing anyway, and answer the questions.
Here's the link http://goo.gl/TEqea.
The deadline is the 17th of October and all the terms and conditions are on the site.
To participate in the competition, you have to answer a simple questions. The answer will be in one of these 3 videos:
So on with the recipe:
Chicken and Seafood Paella
300gs of paella rice
600mls of chicken stock
150mls of white wine
1/2tsp of saffron
2tsp of smoked paprika
2tsps of tomato puree
100gs of chopped smoked chorizo
2 medium sized chicken breasts chopped into chunks
200gs of cooked king prawns/shrimp-if uncooked ou need to add them 10 mins earlier in the coooking process
100gs of shelled, cooked mussels-if live you need to add them when you add the raw shelled prawns
6-8 king sized raw shelled prawns
3 chopped banana shallots or 1 large onion
2 sliced red peppers
3 chopped cloves of garlic
2tbsps of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Season the chicken chunks with salt and pepper and add 1tsp of smoked paprika. Mix it all well, making sure every chunk is covered in the paprika.
Fry the chorizo in a non stick frying pan until all the oils start runnning out. Add the shallots and cook until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.
Add the sliced peppers and fry gently for 2 minutes.
Add the chicken chunks and fry until opaque.
Add the tomato puree and stir well. Push the meat and veg to the side in order to make a well and add the rice.
Combine the rice well with the vegetables and meat for 2 minutes and add the wine.
Once the wine has reduced, add the stock, 1tsp of smoked paprika and the saffron.
Stir well, cover and allow it to simmer for 10-12 minutes. If you're using raw seafood, you should add it to the dish, 5 minutes into cooking.
Once the rice has softened, add our cooked seafood.
Mix it all well,place the raw king prawns on top of the rice, cover and simmer for a further 10 minutes.
At the end of the cooking time I removed the heads of the prawns as m guests were a bit squeamish.
Sprinkle with lots of freshly chopped parsle and garnish with lemon wedges.
Serve with a nice fresh side salad,