When all else fails and you’re suffering from food homesickness, make this rice.
Spanish-style brothy rice (or as we call it, arroz caldoso) is just the perfect comfort food. Filling, warm, rich and full of flavour.
This traditional dish never fails to please.
On this occasion, I used some scallops and prawns, but you can use any type of seafood you like – mussels and clams will work beautifully too.
I started off by peeling the prawns. Instead of discarding the peel, add it to a pot over medium heat and drizzle some olive oil. Let it cook for 3-4 minutes (stirring occasionally and pressing the heads of the prawns – to squeeze out all the juices). Add in some water and bring it to a boil. Let it cook for about 20 minutes. Now we have our homemade prawn broth! I also added half an onion and 1 tomato, to add up to the flavour. If you´re willing to go the extra mile, try adding some fish bones or scraps of meat to the broth.
To get started with the sofrito, chop 1/2 a red pepper, 1/2 green pepper, 1 small onion and 1 tomato. Slowly fry the veggies in a large pot over medium heat, for about 5 minutes. Make sure to stir occasionally.
Once the veggies have softened, add in the rice. For this kind of dish we use a ratio of 1 part rice, 4 parts liquid (I just used 1 glass to measure my rice and broth). I would recommend using bomba rice or a similar kind (paella rice, short-grain). If you use a different one, you´ll have a different texture and the rice could be easily overcooked. But don´t worry if you cannot find bomba rice, you will only have to control the cooking time very carefully. This time around, I only had long-grain at home and it was just as tasty!
Stir in the rice and fry for about 1 minute. Now it´s time for the wine! Pour in half a glass of white wine and let it cook until the alcohol has evaporated. This will be your wake-up call to add the broth to the pot. Let the mixture cook for as long as the rice needs, until it´s al dente. As a rule of thumb, the rice should eventually absorb 2 or 3 times its volume.
As prawns and scallops don´t need much time to cook, I added them in 3 minutes before removing the pot from the heat.
It was so delicious!