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Chicken Surprise

We've been living in Spain for over six years now. We've eaten as much rice, or paella, as anyone could reasonably do in that time. I still get slightly annoyed when Spaniards ask me if I've ever eaten rice as though we eat Roast Beef and Yorkshire pud all the time.

One of my standard meals is something that resembles a Spanish paella in that it has lots of yellow coloured rice. Maggie calls it chicken surprise because no two are exactly the same. She also says it smells and tastes a lot like a Vesta Meal because, rather than using saffron, I use a packet of some sort of commercial paella flavouring and colouring. Normally I cook it in a standard saucepan but I've begun to think that it's maybe coming out a little too moist.

On Friday as I popped into Carrefour to get the ingredients I went wild and spent 7€ on a proper paella pan.  No Spanish home is complete without one.

I'm wondering about giving Maggie a real surprise next time. One of the traditional rice dishes in Valencia, reserved for Fridays when all good Catholics used to avoid meat, is a paella made from cauliflower and cod. It would be a particular surprise as she's not keen on fish!


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