Yum, yum: Arroz con Mariscos

Plan now for a weekend feast: Arroz con Mariscos (Portuguese seafood with rice)

Add a little calor to your life with this delicioso Portuguese dish. The combination of fresh seafood, rice and simple seasonings get an extra kick from spicy Piri-Piri sauce. It’s quick, tastes divine and will give the (false) appearance you’ve spent hours slaving over a hot stove. Enjoy with a chilled vinho Branco (Portuguese white wine).

Image courtesy of http://www.terra.com.pe/
Ingredients
– 1 large onion, finely chopped
– 4 cloves of garlic, minced
– 2 bay leaves
– 1 bunch of parsley
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 4 cups rice
– 2 cups shrimp broth*
– 2 cups water
– 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
– 1 tbsp. tomato concentrate
– pinch saffron

– salt
– Piri-Piri sauce (a delicious Portuguese hot sauce made from Piri-Piri hot peppers)
– 2 pounds fresh seafood (if possible) – shrimp, mussels, white fish, scallops and octopus. If not fresh, frozen works well. Make sure to thaw and drain well before cooking.
– cilantro for garnish

Steps

1. Sauté onion, garlic, bay leaf, tomato concentrate and parsley in olive oil in a Dutch oven or stovetop-friendly casserole dish.
2. Add rice and mix well to make sure completely covered.
3. Add broth, water, salt, red pepper, saffron and Piri-Piri sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and cook until rice is soft (about 30 minutes).

4. Mix in seafood, cover and cook over low heat for about 5 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the seafood!
5. Remove from heat, garnish with fresh cilantro and serve.


*Shrimp broth: after peeling shrimp, save the peelings, add 2.5 cups of water and simmer for about 30 minutes over low heat. The shells pack tons of flavour and will make a delicious broth.