Saturday, 20 February 2010

Belen's Paella Recipe

Saute garlic, onion and green pepper in olive oil.  Add one cup rice, letting it soak in the oil, then two cups water.  Right away add 1 tsp saffron (which, Belen says, you should buy in bulk in Vigo like Fred Wah does, since it's so much cheaper there), mushrooms, olives and sausage (or chicken or pork, which you should saute first with garlic, onion and pepper).  Cook uncovered over medium heat on stovetop until done.

But tonight in Viana do Castelo it's "Bacalhau a Gil Eannes" featured at a bunch of restaurants as part of a regional gastronomic promotion.  A cod dish, one of many, Viana in former times being major port for the cod-fishing industry off Newfoundland, and the Gil Eannes being a hospital ship serving the industry.  Now it's a museum and hostel in Viana.

And while I'm at it, I'll be working on a sea piece (of writing), trying to work out what the sea means most: the young people who gather in the afternoons to smoke and play cards, the many variations of cod dishes served in the evening, or the night itself, what the sea does to light.

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