|Bonjour Les Amis!
No, it’s no mistake that you’re getting a paella recipe. I’ve chosen to feature this paella because we sell salt cod from our deli case, & this unusual paella was so delicious! Make it a buy a bottle of cider.
COD, POCHAS & PADRON PAELLA adapted from Paella by Penelope Casas
What do you do when you have padrons coming out of your ears & some are getting spicy? Throw them into this paella. I had some salt cod in my meat drawer left over from my Feast of the Seven Fishes dinner (the stuff really keeps), & I always have paella rice on hand. I just needed to buy some beans & clam stock & VOILA! One of my new favorite paellas. I used prepared Aioli rather than making the garlic sauce in the original recipe, and that worked well. Perfect with Basque Cidre.
Serves 6 to 8
1/4 lb dried boneless salt cod (available in bags at Spanish Table, available in bulk at Paris Grocery)
cup jarred Pochas (white beans)
3 1/2 clam juice, diluted with 1/2 cup water
1/4 tsp crumbled saffron
8 Tbs olive oil
4 large padron peppers, finely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, finely chopped
2 medium tomatoes, grated
1/2 tsp sweet pimenton
3 cups Valenciano rice
Soak the salt cod in cold water to cover. Penelope says 2-3 days, changing water once or twice daily. I did mine in 24 hours, changing water more frequently. Drain & dry between paper towels & chop very coarsely, then set aside.
Rinse & drain the beans, put in pot with 2 cups water, diluted clam juice & saffron. Keep broth hot over the lowest heat.
Preheat oven 400 for gas, 450 electric.
Heat oil in paella pan. Saute cod over medium heat, add peppers, saute, stirring occasionally until peppers are slightly softened. Add garlic & cook 1 minute. Add tomatoes & cook 2 minutes more. Stir in paprika & rice.
Pour in hot broth & bring to boil. Taste for salt, add beans, boil, stirring, rotating pan until rice is no longer soupy, about 5 minutes.
Transfer to oven & cook 10-12 minutes in gas, 15 to 20 electric. I found I needed to add more liquid. Cover with foil & let set & steam 5-10 minutes. I threw the pan back on the burner to create more of a soccarat. Serve with Alioli.
Sagarnoa Basque Cider $12.99
What is one of my favorite memories of France? Eating crepes along a canal with local cider. Sagarnoa is a direct import that I love for a few reasons. This has the cloudy appearance in the glass that I expect, but it’s not nearly as funky as some Basque ciders. The other is the price. PS-We sell buckwheat flour & Comte.
Comte $22.99 lb
I learned something from reading David Leibovitz’s blog on Comte: “A green label means the cheese is the best of its class and a brown label means that the cheese might have a few cracks or other flaws”. We have the green label! This cheese is huge, which is why I’ve been hesitant to bring it in. The smallest piece I could get was an 8th wheel, which weighed 10 lbs!!!! But minutes after it arrived, I sold my first piece to an excited customer. You better believe I’ll keep it in stock.
Chateau Blaignan 2009, Medoc $17.99
Our staff thought this such a bargain that we got two cases, 2 wooden cases that is. A class act for 18 bucks! Smoky blackberries abound, spicy & gritty make this destined for Steak au Poivre.
Moulin Madagascar Green Peppercorns $7.99
Green peppercorns thrive in the tropics… Instead of being dried in the sun, green peppercorns are quickly dehydrated, which retain color & a mild spicy flavor. The Moulin family hand-selects these peppercorns & preserves them in saltwater brine for great texture. Here’s Mario Batali’s recipe for Steak au Poivre.
Mas Champart Saint Chinian Rosé 2013, Languedoc $16.99
From the west side of the Rhone which is the same side where Tavel wines hail from, this is bright, serious, with savory fruit. Try with salmon & Provencal herbs… “Saint Chinian Rosé is for Tempier Bandol lovers with Languedoc budgets”
Gros Gres des Vosges $33.99 lb
Munster fans, your prayers have been answered. This Alsatian cheese has the garlic, mushroom, barnyard washed rind you love, with a little bit of crunch. Smear on walnut bread, pair with an Alsatian white.