"The only real stumbling block is the fear of failure. In cooking, you have got to have a what-the-hell attitude." ~ Julia Child

Next week’s challenge: California-style Paella…

by Julie Tilsner on June 27, 2007

in Good Ideas Gone Bad

I have one word for you:

Yeah, right.

Sorry, that’s two words.

But that was my response when the flamenco guitarist sent me this article in today’s Food section of the Los Angeles Times. “I know you don’t care for paella, but take a look at this…”

Wow. The instructions for a California-style paella that the writer, Leslie Brenner, swore was easy enough to make. Although I’m not a huge paella fan, I have to say that her excitement and vim had me salivating.

Paella is a Spanish dish that usually, but not always, includes a variety of seafood, including shrimp, which I can’t eat because it makes me break out in hives. It’s basically a rice and saffron-based meal cooked slowly in a signature paella pan.

I’ve had paella twice. Once my friend Javier made it for me, because I’d spent two weeks editing his scholarly paper on the ancient Elemites. That he and his wife spent all day making it on the crappy two-burner electric stoves our student family apartments came equipped with made it all the more impressive. And yes, it was very tasty. And I even ate the shrimp, to disastrous results.

I had it again in Spain, where I found it entirely too salty.

Up until now, I’ve viewed this traditional dish as something with way too much pomp and history for me to be interested in. Never mind that it always seemed vastly beyond my abilities to attempt. I can’t even say paella correctly. Pie-ay-a?

But now the gauntlet has been thrown. The flamenco guitarist says he’ll even get me a paella pan this weekend. And buy the ingredients.

I’m doing this because the recipe in the Times’ article did sound tasty. And because I do like a challenge, when I’m up to it. And because Tony is always on me to cook him something Spanish. And because, frankly, think of the blog potential here.

Wish me luck, folks. And stay tuned.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

AT June 27, 2007 at 2:14 pm

..que alegria..!


BaddAss MisterJ June 29, 2007 at 12:27 am

Word of advice. . .
Don’t tackle this task alone!
And besides, it will make for a better read!


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