Renowned Chef Lenny Rede will be making his famous paella and pairing this dish with the perfect Spanish wines selected by Catherine Reynolds on Tuesday, January 15th from 6:30 – 8pm. To register for this class or apply a discount using your Living Social Voucher, click here. Because you will enjoy Chef Lenny’s famous paella and wine pairings, this class is $50.
Here’s a review of the last Paella class at Wine World and Spirits:
Guest Post by Ed Amato
Last night, I attended Rioja and Paella, the second class in the Wine, Cook and Dine series with Chef Lenny. We learned a little bit about Spanish culture and the history behind paella. Truly traditional paella is made in alley ways over open fire pits with ingredients like snails, water voles and eels. While Lenny loves to make paella over a Weber grill, he demonstrated over a stove top in class.
We learned how to make three different types of paella: paella valencia ala Leonardo, paella de pollo, alcachofas y champiñones (Chicken, artichoke and mushroom) and vegetarian paella. The paella valencia ala Leonardo was my favorite of the three. It was a gorgeous dish and unfortunately I didn’t get a good picture of it. Best of all, it tasted even better than it looked
Fun Paella and Rioja Facts
- More grapes are cultivated in Spain, than either France or Italy
- Paella is basically the Spanish word for casserole. There are as many types of paella as there are casseroles.
- Spanish wine makers love to use American oak
- Rioja wines are sometimes referred to as the “poor man’s Bordeaux”
Paella cooking tips
- Sardines are the key to adding delicious unami flavors to the the dish
- Use a variety of fish for the best flavor in seafood paellas
- Cook the rice and seafood separately. Although this is not the traditional method, it is the best way to ensure that the seafood doesn’t get overcooked and mushy.
- If using canned artichokes, only use the whole artichokes canned in water for the best quality. Lesser quality artichokes are quartered and placed in marinade.
- Use vegetable, fish or a mixture of chicken and vegetable broth. 100% chicken broth is too rich for most paellas.
- When sautéing, let the meat and vegetables sit in the pan so they can caramelize, most people stir too much and miss out that flavor
- Cava Segura Viudas
- Marques de Caceres Blanco Rioja
- Marques de Caceres Rosado Rioja
- Tinto Rioja – Antoño 2008
- Crianza LAN
- Reserva 04 Ontañon
- Reserva 01 Baron de Chirel
The Baron de Chirel was a true treat. Lenny was excited to share this reserva with us because it is from the oldest winery in the Rioja appellation. It was an amazing wine, full and complex. The wines we tasted that night ranged from very inexpensive (ie $7.99) to that gorgeous Baron de Chirel that was $70 but worth every penny.
It was a great class. I always appreciate Lenny’s sense of humor and expertise and I learned a lot about Spanish wine as well as how to prepare paella. I can’t wait for the next class!