Parties and Paella

Jack and I flew out West (California) last week to help celebrate three momentous events: grandparents 50th wedding anniversary, aunt and uncle’s 25th anniversary, and uncle’s 50th birthday

In the middle of the party, the grandparents decided to surprise the guests by throwing a second wedding and renewing their vows. It was a beautiful day full of friends, family, and lots and lots of food.

[![](jekyll_uploads/2011/06/cali-2011-076-575x431.jpg "paella closeup")]( Paella Closeup

Other ingredients for this spectacular bash: 200 guests, 300 BBQ Oysters, 3 roasted pigs, 1 giant pan of paella, 4 bands,  and lots and lots of appetizers

I thought you all might enjoy pictures of the beautiful paella dish. For those of you who may not be familiar with this dish, I will attempt to explain.

Paella is a type of Spanish rice dish, associated with the region of Valencia. Paella can take on many forms with many different combinations of ingredients which may or may not contain the following:

chicken, pork, shellfish, fish, eel, squid, beans, peas, artichokes or peppers

The essential spice is saffron, which also turns the rice a golden color.

What I believe is most intriguing about paella is the way in which it must be cooked. Paella is cooked in a giant flat pan over an open fire. The meat is browned first on a higher heat and later reduced to simmer the rice.

Our paella included clams, sausage, chicken, rice, asparagus, red peppers, and much more.

[![](jekyll_uploads/2011/06/cali-2011-075-575x431.jpg "Paella Pan")]( Large Paella Pan

The final pictures are absolutely beautiful and reinforce my belief that beautiful looking food is the key to wonderful tasting food.