5 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
8 cloves garlic, minced and divided
1 large onion, diced
1 bay leaf
1 green pepper, seeded and cut into strips
1 cup white wine
1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
10 threads saffron, soaked in 1/4 cup boiling water for 5 minutes
1/2 tsp. Spanish paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups short grain rice (such as Bomba or Valencia)
5 cups faux chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup frozen peas
20 faux prawn, lobster balls, and/or scallops (available from www.vegieworld.com)
2 lemons with 1/2 lemon set aside and the remaining 1 1/2 cut into wedges
6 pimento (roasted red pepper) strips
1 6-oz. jar marinated artichoke hearts, coarsely chopped
2 sprigs flat-leaf parsley or cilantro, chopped
• In a paella pan or large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp. of the olive oil over low heat.
• Add half the garlic, the onion, bay leaf, and green pepper and cook until the onion and green pepper are soft. Add the wine, tomato, the saffron and water mixture, and the paprika and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then simmer for 5 minutes.
• Add the rice, stirring to coat. Add the stock, return to a boil, and simmer for 20 minutes or until the rice is al dente. Do not cover or stir. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, scatter the peas on top.
• Meanwhile, heat the remaining 3 Tbsp. of olive oil in a medium skillet over low heat. Add the remaining garlic, the faux prawn, lobster balls, and/or scallops, salt and pepper, and the juice of half a lemon. Sauté, covered, for 10 minutes, turning the faux seafood until browned on all sides.
• Place the faux seafood, pimento strips, artichokes, and lemon wedges on top of the paella pan of rice, scattering them for an attractive appearance. Finish by sprinkling parsley or cilantro over the top. Serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings