Monday, July 1, 2013

Vegetarian Paella


I'm going to Spain soon so I wanted to eat some Paella but the Spanish restaurants in town charge $40 for a pan of it which means I'd need a team of people to eat it with me. lol Well I decided to make my own! I figured unlike theirs I would add vegetarian protein to it so it would be even better! I made a spicy and hearty paella full of delicious veggies.


The most important ingredient for paella is the rice, and not any will do. Bomba is the strain of rice native to Spain and is quite pricey due to how its grown. I got a 1 kilo bag for $13 at Sur La Table. It cooks differently from other types of rice in that the grains widen allowing it to absorb more liquid (and flavor) yet remains separate and individually loose from one another and its hard to overcook it.

The second most important ingredients are the spices. You want good quality saffron, smoked paprika (secret ingredient) and piquillo peppers (from Spain) if you want a nice complexity of flavors and an incredible color to your dish. I have smoked paprika from Trader Joes but it has no flavor, when I opened up the tin of smoked Spanish paprika I could smell the smoked flavor!  For protein I used vegetarian sausage which is made from wheat gluten and is super spicy! My vegetables were peas, carrots, mushrooms, and broccoli, but you can use any vegetables you like but I think peas are always a staple.


Ingredients:
1 TB extra virgin olive oil
1½ cups Bomba Rice
3 cups vegetable stock (adjust if using different rice)
3 piquillo peppers
½ sweet onion
3 garlic gloves minced
1½ tsp Spanish paprika 
5-10 strands of saffron
1- 14oz can chopped tomatoes
2 large carrots diced
1 cup broccoli florets
2 Chipolte Field Roast Sausages cut diagonally into 1 inch pieces 4 oz baby bella mushrooms
1½ cup frozen peas
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the Piquillo peppers, onion and carrots.  Reduce heat to medium low and cook until the onion is translucent.
  3. In a separate pan sauté mushrooms and set aside.
  4. In the large skillet add the garlic, smoked paprika, saffron, and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Stir in the rice, broccoli and warmed stock and bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover with lid, and simmer 20 minutes.
  7. Bake in oven at 325F for 10 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.
  8. Add the mushrooms and mix in. Then add peas on the surface (do not stir yet), cover, and allow peas to steam 1 to 2 minutes. Then mix in peas and top with sausage.
  9. Season 
with salt and pepper, if desired.

Prep time is one hour and it makes 6 servings. One serving is 324 calories, 15 grams of protein, 9 grams of fiber. This is going to be my lunch for the week. I already divided it into 5 containers so in the morning it's easy to just grab out the fridge. No guess work on what to eat, I save money and calories from not going out to eat everyday. This week I'll be snacking on grapes since Whole Foods had a one day sale on Friday for 99¢ a lb!

Do you take the time to plan your meals and snacks throughout the week? This is one of the things that I do every week to keep myself accountable! It also helps save on groceries too!  Message me for help with meal planning or picking a workout to meet your needs!  I absolutely love love love helping others and would like to do the same for you!!! Have a great week!

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