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Sailors' Rice Stew

José Antonio Romero Valdespino is dedicated to recovering traditional Andalusian recipes, which he serves up in his Jerez restaurant, La Mesa Redonda. This is a classic fisherman’s dish in which simple, readily available ingredients are combined to make a tasty and nutritious dish.

Serves 4-6:

  • 1 kg rock fish such as rascasse or gurnard
  • 250 gr onions
  • 100 gr green peppers
  • 250 gr ripe tomatoes
  • 250 gr small clams
  • 200 gr large prawns
  • 300 gr rice
  • 200 ml olive oil
  • 1 gr saffron
  • 100 ml dry fino sherry
  • 200 gr small shrimp

Clean and remove bones from the fish. Boil the bones and head in one liter of water with an onion, a celery stalk, and a bunch of parsley to make a stock. Chop the onions, peppers, and tomatoes into medium-sized chunks. Finely chop the garlic. Pour oil into a pot and heat over medium flame. Sauté the vegetables until they start to brown.

Add the cleaned fish, the clams, and the rice to the vegetables and sauté for a few minutes. Add the strained fish stock and the wine. Take care not to over salt.

Simmer over a medium flame for twenty minutes. Five minutes before this time is lip, add the shrimp and prawns. Season to taste. Remove from heat and let sit for ten minutes before serving.

Recommended wine: A Pedro Ximénez varietal white wine from the Montilla-Monjes denominación area, or a white from the Condado de Huelva, in either case a wine of a low alcohol level.

This rice dish with its strong taste of the sea, lightly perfumed with saffron, calls for a light white wine, chilled to 8°C (46°F), with a low alcohol level. A Pedro Ximénez white from Montilla-Moriles, where the classic aromas of the very ripe fruit are tempered by the light texture and flavor of a dry white. It could also be accompanied by a Zalema varietal white from the Condado de Huelva, with a similarly low alcohol level, light density, ripe fruit aromas, and light flavor.


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