Victor Vicente of Casa Granero with Ximo Puig, President of the Communidad de Valencia

Casa Granero takes prize for best Paella ‘Cullera’

Victor Vicente’s Casa Granero took first place yesterday in Cullera’s first annual Paella “Cullera” competition.  The event was held to promote a new dish created by award winning chef Salvador Gascón to help develop gastronomic tourism in the city.  The dish is made from rockfish broth, local prawns, cuttlefish sepionet sin tinta (cuttlefish without ink), red mullet, figatells de escorpa (scorpion fish ‘cakes’), J. Sendra rice, tomatoes, sweet pimentón and saffron.

Paella Cullera

Meet Spain’s newest rice dish, Paella Cullera

Eighteen restaurants from around the area competed in the contest and were challenged to recreate Gascón’s recipe ‘as is.’  No special ingredients or improvisations were allowed.  The dishes were then judged by a ‘whose- who’ of local chefs, including Michelin starred QuiQue Dacosta, Susi Diaz and Manuel Alonso.

Second place was captured by Restaurante Pilar of Castellón, and third place by El Ríncon of Meliana.

Contestants also took part in a dessert competition, in which Alzira’s Cami Vell Restaurant, was awarded first place, for its Egg in the Nest, with chocolate brulee and orange cream.  Second place went to Restaurant Pilar, and third place to Les Rotes of Denia.

Cullera’s tourism board plans to continue the Paella Cullera competition for years to come.  As well, starting today, forty area restaurants and hotels will feature Paella Cullera on their menus, with the hope that tourists will travel to Cullera to try the dish, which was designed to showcase the city’s high quality seafood products.

Quique Dacosta, Salvador Gascon

Judge and celebrity chef Quique Dacosta and creator of Paella Cullera Salvador Gascon with Jordi Mayor, Mayor of Cullera at Paella Cullera Competition

 

Contestants Make Paella

Contestants in Cullera’s Best Paella Competition prepare Spain’s newest rice dish

 

Chocolate Egg

First place dessert, “Egg in the Nest” with chocolate brulee and orange cream by Cami Vell Restaurant

 

Quique Barella and Manuel Alonso

Judges Chef Quique Barella (left) and Chef Manuel Alonso (right)

 

Dacosta_Diaz

Chef Quique Dacosta and Lens Gourmand’s Veronica Diaz

 

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