Paella – pork, chorizo and spinach

Somewhere along the line, I ordered some chorizo for cooking with, in a huge pack, and then froze it. This weekend, I started trying out recipes that use chorizo. I bought the pork loin from MacLean’s shop in Benbecula, and the spices are mostly purchased online from Seasoned Pioneers. I got the recipe from the Moro cookbook. Most of the other ingredients I found in the co-op. Irritatingly, you can only buy peppers in packs of three in the co-op, so I went to MacLennan’s for the green peppers. The recipe took about 45 minutes to make. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 7 or more tablespoons of olive oil
  • 350g pork fillet or loin, cut into 7mm strips
  • 120g cooking chorizo, cut into little pieces
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 1 large green pepper, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 250g paella rice
  • 2 ñora peppers, or a good pinch of sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 900ml hot chicken stock
  • 500g spinach 
  • 1 lemon, cut in wedges
  • salt and pepper

METHOD:

  • In a large flat pan, such as a paella pan or a very large frying pan, heat the olive oil on a high heat, and then quickly fry and stir the pork strips so that they are just about cooked, it doesn’t take long. Remove the pork from the pan with a slotted spoon. season with salt and pepper and set aside. 
  • In the same pan, put in the chopped chorizo, stir and add the onion, stir and add the green pepper. Turn the heat down to medium. Make sure you aren’t stingy with the oil. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring to make sure that all of the onion caramelises. 
  • Add the garlic and continue to cook for another 5 minutes or so. 
  • Add the rice, and stir so everything is evenly mixed.
  • Season with salt and pepper, and add the paprika. If you are using ñora peppers, these should be torn up, seeds and stalks discarded, and soaked in hot water first so that they are soft. Add the hot chicken stock. Simmer for 15 minutes, until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid and is just about cooked through. 
  • About 5 minutes before the end of the cooking period, put all of the washed spinach in a very large pan, turn up the heat and cook until it is all wilted down. 
  • When the rice is cooked, add the pork and spinach and push it into the paella, so that the oil soaks in. Cover with a lid and let everything settle for around 5 minutes. 
  • Serve with lemon wedges. The lemon is absolutely essential for bringing out the best flavour. It needs a lovely fresh salad as well, for example a green salad or a tomato salad. So delicious. 

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