I spent the Easter weekend in South Wales and everyone had a request for the feasting from Simnel cake to fish and chips on the beach. My husband’s request was for a paella and after a bracing hillside walk on Easter Monday (made extra challenging by me having to walk the slippery bits hunched over in order to hold both of my three-year old’s hands), I took a busman’s holiday and lit a fire.
My tip for lighting fire’s in new surroundings are to pack a candle lighter. After hunting around the holiday let I found a box containing no fewer than 12 matches which seemed seasonal if nothing else. The sandpaper strip was well worn and while I managed to get a steady fire going using just eight matches in a minor gale, with each failed attempt there was a growing hint of drama about the proceedings.
The paella was made by frying onions, peppers and chorizo in oil then adding risotto rice, a spice blend brought from home (turmeric, saffron, smoked paprika, smoked salt and black pepper), smoked garlic and a glass of rose (since that was what we were drinking). I had made lamb stock from the joint roasted for lunch on Easter Sunday so that featured along with the shredded leftover meat. When the rice was cooked I threw in a lot of prawns. Simple, smoky, superb.