After basking in the flavors of France for a month, I’m still feeling a bit of Provençal providence in the kitchen.

Paella Provencal-030

Known for the amazing bouillabaisse, rich and delicious ratatouille, succulent olive oil and juicy olives, super salty tapenade and sardines, as well as the fragrant floral herbs, I feasted upon these items each and every day (along with my body weight in salami and cheese on many occasions – and in order to balance that out, I decided to drink my body weight in wine – just kidding {maybe}).

The flavors are sensual, exquisite, delicate, and robust all at once.
I can still sense the  savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, oregano, and lavender floating across my palate.

Paella Provencal-031

Just as dreamy as my French experience was, I also found myself missing many of the comforts of home. My bed, my pillow, my shower, and also my kitchen. You see, I have some pretty amazing things stored away in my kitchen and I felt as though I was going through withdraw after a month devoid of their use. And now that I’m home, I felt as though I really, really wanted to break out my paella pan again. It’s virtually new, and utterly awesome:

Andrew Zimmern Sarten Carbon Steel Paella Pan

Thus, Provençal Paella.

Actually, this recipe is not really remotely related to true paella. I just really wanted to characterize the recipe with the use of my pan AND a cute and catchy call tag. You know me, I absolutely adore alliterations.

If you’re craving a legitimate Ashley Paella recipe, you can find that here.

Otherwise, find yourself profoundly pleased with this Provençal Paella.

Provençal Paella

1 large spaghetti squash, halved and seeded
2 Tbs. Kerrygold salted butter (or olive oil)
3 mild sausage links, thickly sliced at an angle
1 small head of fresh fennel, thinly sliced + 2 Tbs. minced fennel fronds
2 tsp. Herbs de Provence (including lavender)
1/4 cup mixed Provencal olives

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. After halving and seeding the squash, position the two halves back together and wrap in foil. Bake 60-90 minutes, until soft. Once cool enough to handle, scoop out the squash insides and set aside.

Over medium heat, melt the butter in a large cast-iron skillet or super duper awesome paella pan.
Add the fennel and spaghetti squash. Stir and sauté until the fennel begins to caramelize. 
Stir in sausage and continue to sauté until the sausage is cooked through.
Sprinkle with seasoning, salt (not too much, as the sausage and the olives are already salty), and fresh rosemary.

Serve with a glass of red wine and imagine yourself seated at a tiny little table on the cobblestone streets of Aix en Provence, people watching and simply enjoying life.

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