Each person has their opinion about what the secret ingredient for paella is, is it quality Valencian rice, top ingredients, our experience and love for that paella dish that we are preparing? Depending on who you ask, you may hear that the answer to this question is a good Alicante salmorreta.
In this blog post we are going to tell you about salmorreta and how to prepare this appreciated Alicante stir-fry.
What is salmorreta?
Salmorreta is considered the essential sauce in almost all Alicante paellas and rice dishes. This sauce, prepared in advance of the recipe we want to make, provides that characteristic color and flavor found in Levantine rice.
The origins of this recipe are not completely certain except for its place of origin, although popular stories say that the chefs of the sailor ships prepared it in advance on land to use it in the meals on their ships during their long stays at sea.
The essential ingredient of salmorreta is dried ñora, a pepper popularly known by the name “ball pepper”, small in size and round in shape, red in color. The ñoras are left to dry in the sun so that they can later be used in a variety of recipes. In this case, we are going to teach you how to prepare salmorreta for paella.
The following amount of ingredients are indicated to prepare salmorreta for 4 people:
|6 cloves of garlic
|2 ripe tomatoes
|Salt ( to our liking)
|120 ml of extra virgin olive oil
Steps to prepare your salmorreta for paella
1- To prepare salmorreta, first of all, clean the ñoras, remove the peduncle, the upper root where this pepper hangs, and the seeds, from here we chop and cut the meat. You can skip this step if you intend to make it with powdered or crushed ñora, since in that case you already have it prepared beforehand.
2- Next, peel the garlic cloves and cut them in half. Meanwhile, fill a pot with extra virgin olive oil and put it over medium heat. When you have the garlic peeled, sauté for a few minutes until golden.
When they have a golden color, add the ñora meat or ñora powder. If you are making it with powdered or crushed ñora, stir for 30 seconds so that it spreads with the oil.
3- While our ñora is cooking, puree the tomatoes with a blender and add the crushed tomato into the pot. We cook for 30-40 minutes, meanwhile, we add a pinch of salt to our own taste.
4- After these 30-40 minutes, if we see that the tomato has evaporated, our sauce will be ready, the only thing left is to grind it. The best way is to transfer it to a mixing glass or bowl and blend with a blender until we have a homogeneous mixture without lumps. It should have a consistency similar to that of red mayonnaise.
Having followed these steps you have in your hands a real salmorreta to prepare your paellas, we especially recommend it to make a banda rice.
Remember that you can keep it in the refrigerator for a week if you are not going to use it right away. A trick that we can also recommend is freezing the salmorreta in an ice tray. These salmorreta cubes can be used not only to preserve salmorreta for up to 2 months, but also to divide it into portions as needed for your rice dishes.
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