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Middle Eastern Black Rice Paella

Here is another delicious meal which is perfect for relaxed weekend entertaining. I have baked the paella rather than stirring it on top of the hob which in my opinion works beautifully. I used the gorgeous black Venus rice which is almost meaty and really hearty. You could sub the black rice for bomba paella rice, although you will have to reduce the time by approximately 20 minutes and you will need use between 850ml -1 litre of stock. This one does have a bit of kick (which I liked) so I served it with a gorgeous Calik/Tzatziki which worked brilliantly.

Serves 4


2 red onions - roughly chopped

3 cloves garlic - chopped

1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper

1 aubergine - chopped into 2cm sq

350g black rice

1 tablespoon harissa paste

1.5 litres hot stock - (you may not need all of it)

500g fresh salmon fillets - cut into 5-7 pieces (coated in 1 teaspoon of the harissa paste)

Lemon to squeeze

Coriander & pomegranate seeds to serve

1 paella pan or large shallow pan

Calik/Tzatziki - mix together in a bowl

3 tablespoons Greek yogurt

1/4 of a cucumber - grated or finely chopped and drained on kitchen towel

1 clove garlic - crushed

1 tablespoon chopped coriander or mint (I like both)

2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

Salt & pepper


Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees

Add the onion, garlic & Aleppo pepper to the pan and coat in 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the aubergine and mix thoroughly. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a medium/low heat on the hob. Pour in the rice and stir to combine. Add the stock and carefully mix. Return to the oven for 50-60 minutes. If at this stage it’s not cooked and all the liquid has been absorbed, add more stock. Stir and back in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and place the salmon on top. Return to the oven for 7-10 minutes. Sprinkle with coriander and pomegranate seeds.

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