After the spanish civil war (1936-1939) the country wanting, to develop tourism, to find an emblematic national dish, the General Franco chooses paella for several reasons: inexpensive rice, easy arrangements and, above all, the colors of the dish (red of the pepper and tomato, yellow of the saffron rice), which echo those of the spanish flagl.
The rice for cooking paella must remain firm while absorbing the juice well.
Half-long or round rices are the most suitable; Do not use Asian rice and avoid risotto rice because it is too sticky. Preferably opt for a certified D.O. Arroz de Valencia rice (Bomba, Bahia, Sénia and Albufera types). It grows up to 4 times its size and its high absorption capacity is ideal.
Bahia and Sénia are rices with semi-long pearl grains, the size of which is between 5 and 6 millimeters. The "pearl" provides additional starch which promotes the absorption of the broth during its cooking, and therefore the transmission of the flavors of the cooked dish.
Bomba has a round grain of less than 5 millimeters. It is pearly and has an excellent culinary quality because it does not open lengthwise. Abufera, another round rice, is also suitable for paella.
To date there are many paella recipes, but Valencians deny any preparation other than theirs the right to call themselves paella Valenciana. In the paella orthodox, there could be no other meats than those taken from farmyard animals: chicken, rabbit, and or) duck, which we brown witholive oil. Then add some tomato grated (or mashed tomatoes), ferradures (green beans), a few garrofons (lima beans, very large white beans) and / or tavelles (fresh beans in grain), some add tubs (small snails fields), artichokes, peppers and / or a littlegarlic.
In the Valencian paella, the rice is cooked in the broth but in the paella ofAlicante, the rice must first be returned in oil, it must be fried. Paella can be served with lemon to squeeze the juice onto the dish, if desired. The yellow coloring of rice comes from saffron (or a dye food based But). Nothing in common between this recipe and paellas "Modern" (paella mixta), where meats and fish, seafood, and pork intermingle. The purists claim that it is then only "Rice" to this or that.
Like other great Mediterranean specialties (Coca, pizza, pasta Italian, couscous, etc.), paella was originally a popular dish whose recipe varied depending on the local and seasonal ingredients available.