Arròs a banda

Arròs a banda is a very highly esteemed dish nowadays and undoubtedly one of the most famous in the Region of Valencia. Originally the rice was cooked with leftover fish from the markets, such as hake or monkfish, stewed with potato and onion. The rice was cooked with the broth from the stew, as a mere side dish to accompany the fish, hence its name, which means 'rice separately'. It is usually served up with all i oli (garlic mayonnaise) and the town of Dénia holds a prestigious international arròs a banda competition every year.



1/2 kg. anglerfish, 1/4 kg. mackerel, 1/4 kg. horse mackerel, 1/4 kg. blue-mouth rock fish, 1/4 kg. eastern stargazer, 1/4 kg. squilla, 150 gr. cauliflower, 4 small potatoes, 400 gr. rice, 2 dried red pepper pods, 4 cloves of garlic, saffron, olive oil, salt.


Lightly fry the dried red pepper pods and grind them in a mortar with the garlic cloves. Add a little salt. Lightly fry the cauliflower and potato in the same oil and add the crushed pepper. Pour in water to cover the ingredients and let simmer for 10 minutes. Add the fish in order of texture and hardness. Add the saffron, leave the fish to simmer for 10-12 minutes and then strain off the stock. Add salt to taste. In a separate casserole, lightly fry the rice in a little oil and then add the fish stock. Leave to simmer for 18 minutes and then turn the heat off. Let settle for 5 minutes before serving. The fish is served separately (hence the name “a banda”) as a second dish.

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