Valencia has experienced a significant tourist boom in recent years. Most of its visitors come to call for its climate, beaches, monuments and enjoyable nightlife. Also to taste Valencian paellaone of the most recognizable dishes worldwide and even own day on the calendar, September 20.
It is no less true that Valencian paella is a dish. often misrepresented in its ingredients and preparation, to the point of being something it isn’t, and it has very little to do with traditional Valencian paella.
Anything that isn’t Valencian paella
While most people, especially those living outside of Valencia, believe that Valencian paella contains shellfish, the truth is that it is an old recipe that is true and traditional. Farmers of the orchard of Valencia and Ribera del Júcarthey added whatever they had to the stew: the rabbit, the vegetables they harvest, and the free-range chicken.
It was the only luxury saffron It enhanced the flavor of the paella.
Therefore, the authentic recipe consists of diced chicken and rabbit, a variety of Valencian green beans, rice, ferradura and tabella, garrofó, a local type of white bean, grated tomato, a clove of minced garlic, sweet paprika, salt, extra virgin olive oil, if desired. snails, saffron and water.
this authentic recipe it includes chopped chicken and rabbit, rice, ferradura and tabella, garrofó, grated tomato, a clove of minced garlic, sweet paprika, salt, extra virgin olive oil, snails if desired, saffron and water.
Famous writer and journalist Emily PieraA native of Sueca (Valencia), a Valencian gastronomy expert, confirms that “translating a dish with so many sequences and stages and as difficult to prepare as paella is difficult to turn into menu and clientele. ”. He thinks it’s a “domestic” recipe and therefore a restaurant in Valencia that serves a good Valencian paella “provides a very important service”.
Paco AlonsoA Valencian journalist, he is one of its founders. wikipaellaA non-profit organization for the advocacy and recognition of the authentic paellas of the Valencian Community. In the association’s manifesto, its members argue that the best paellas are the best paellas. cooked on firewood and with rice from the land.
Similarly, one of the duties of this entity is to promote them. Restaurants that respect the paella tradition and awards are given to businesses that offer authentic Valencian paella each year, with special mentions for the wood-fired ones.
We asked Paco Alonso why it has been so difficult to eat a good Valencian paella in the capital for many years. “Real paella is associated with an out-of-town setting, and it is paella cooked with firewood that is perfect for a Valencian. Most restaurants in Valencia, especially those in the centre, use gas stoves. “This is a management and logistics issue,” he said.
Authentic Valencian paella is cooked over a wood fire, but most restaurants in Valencia have gas stoves.
Where to eat authentic paella?
In the middle of the Valencia orchard and very close to the Polytechnic University, Valencian paella fans Celebrity House. Over 100 years old, this place has prepared thousands of paellas for several generations of Valencia, and its commendable work has earned it an award. National Hospitality Award. Valencian paella chicken and rabbit Made with firewood, it dazzles with its density and flavor combination.
El Famós also offers very typical Valencian starters. all i pebre d’anguilas or delicious monkfish stew. The wine, cava and champagne list shows over 200 references from various Spanish denominations and other countries.
The main hall of the Casa Carmela restaurant. Photo by Casa Carmela.
in front of the boardwalk hibiscus and so close the house-museum of the writer Vicente Blasco Ibáñezfound caramel house, It occupies what was once Villa Carmen, an early 20th-century summer house.
Casa Carmela is a Mediterranean mansion decorated with colorful tiles and typical Valencian ceramics, ideal for enjoying traditional Valencian paella made with orange tree wood while watching the sea.
You can also dine in the inner courtyard, which was once the barn where chickens and rabbits were bred, and then vegetables were planted in a small garden where Valencian paella was grown.
As an appetizer, enjoy the delicious chili, cod and mojama esgarrate or Valencia clòtxina is a type of mussel grown on the Levantine coast.
Secret: wood fire
Paella RacoNestled in a late 19th century house in his neighborhood lifeIt is another one of those places where enjoying a wood-fired Valencian paella is an inevitable commitment on a visit to Valencia.
The interior of the dining room of Raco de la Paella. Photograph of El Raco de la Paella.
Its different rooms are decorated with traditional tiles, vaulted ceilings and brick floors.
The quality of Valencian paella cooked in wood fire is so great that the Valencia customer is extremely loyal. Among the starters, pickled tuna with sauce and garlic caramel or garrofó hummus stand out.
this Casa Clemencia Restaurant It was established in 1984 as a continuation of the old Casa Clemencia, which was founded in 1966. Although its menu consists of rich meat and fish dishes, Valencians who love good rice come here to enjoy all kinds of paella and rice casseroles, especially Classic. Valencia paella with firewood.
They have several menus, among which the tasting menu stands out, which includes three appetizers, Valencian paella, dessert and coffee at a competitive price of 18 euros (excluding VAT).
Paella at Casa Clemencia. Photo by Casa Clemencia.
To eat Valencian paella at any of these four recommended restaurants is to explore with emotion an atavistic meal cooked the old-fashioned way. An aromatic, substantial and very rich delicacy that has nothing to do with what many outside of Valencia are trying and has the audacity and in many cases shamelessness to inexplicably be called Valencian paella.
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