Vegetable Paella

A colourful and exotic vegetable version of a Spanish national dish, Vegetable Paella is really delicious.

4-6

4 fl. oz. olive oil

2 large onions, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 large red pepper, white pith removed, seeded and sliced

12 oz. long-grain rice, washed, soaked in cold water for

30 minutes and drained

1 pint vegetable stock

4 large tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped

4 oz. frozen green beans

3 oz. frozen petits pois

2 celery stalks, trimmed and chopped

18 black olives, halved and stoned

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon crushed saffron threads dissolved in

2 teaspoons hot water

2 oz. slivered almonds

In a very large saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic and red pepper.

Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent but not brown. Stir in the rice, coating it well with the oil, and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Pour in the stock and increase the heat to high. Bring the liquid to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the tomatoes, green beans, petits pois, celery, olives, salt, pepper and saffron. Cover the pan and simmer the mixture for 30 to 35 minutes or until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed.

Remove the pan from the heat and turn the paella into a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle the almonds on top and serve at once.

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