Daring cooks August challenge - Rice with mushrooms, cuttlefish and artichokes

The August Daring cooks challenge was hosted by Olga from Las Cosas de Olga and Olga's Recipes . She has chosen a delicious Spanish recipe, Rice with mushrooms, cuttlefish and artichokes by José Andrés, one of the most important Spanish Chefs at the moment.

Rice with mushrooms, cuttlefish and artichokes

  • 4 Artichokes (you can use jarred or freezed if fresh are not available)
  • 12 Mushrooms (button or Portobello)
  • 1 or 2 Bay leaves (optional but highly recommended)
  • 1 glass of white wine
  • 2 Cuttlefish (you can use freezed cuttlefish or squid if you don't find it fresh)
  • "Sofregit" (see recipe below)
  • 300 gr (2 cups) Short grain rice (Spanish types Calasparra or Montsant are preferred) - about 75 gr per person
  • Water or Fish Stock (750 ml for 150 g of rice)
  • Saffron threads (substitute: turmeric or yellow coloring powder)
  • Allioli (olive oil and garlic sauce, similar to mayonnaise sauce) - optional


  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 5 big red ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 4 or 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 cup of button or Portobello mushrooms, chopped (optional)
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • Salt
  • Touch of ground cumin
  • Touch of dried oregano

Put all the ingredients together in a frying pan and sauté slowly until all vegetables are soft. Taste and salt if necessary (maybe it's not!)

(here is the video José Andrés cooking it if you don`t like to read ;)

  1. Cut the cuttlefish in little strips.
  2. Add 1 or 2 tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and put the cuttlefish in the pan.
  3. If you use fresh artichokes, clean them as shown in the video in tip #7. Cut artichokes in eights.
  4. Clean the mushrooms and cut them in fourths.
  5. Add a bay leaf to the cuttlefish and add also the artichokes and the mushrooms.
  6. Sauté until we get a golden color in the artichokes.
  7. Put a touch of white wine so all the solids in the bottom of the get mixed, getting a more flavorful dish.
  8. Add a couple or three tablespoons of sofregit and mix to make sure everything gets impregnated with the sofregit.
  9. Add all the liquid and bring it to boil.
  10. Add all the rice. Let boil for about 5 minutes in heavy heat.
  11. Add some saffron thread to enrich the dish with its flavor and color. Stir a little bit so the rice and the other ingredients get the entire flavor. If you're using turmeric or yellow coloring, use only 1/4 teaspoon.
  12. Turn to low heat and boil for another 8 minutes (or until rice is a little softer than "al dente")
  13. Put the pan away from heat and let the rice stand a couple of minutes.

I didn't like the outcome, it tasted a little bit strange and not a spicy as I expected it to do - guess there were a few things that went wrong:
  1. I used canned artichokes. I don't like them too much and all my friends keep telling me I should try the fresh because they taste completely different - so canned ones were a bad idea anyway.

  2. Didn't cook the Sofregit long enough so it wasn't concentrated at all and the taste was lost on the way (it may also be noticeable on the picture, it's just a pale red)

  3. Added way too much water ...

Robert didn't like the taste either - said there was a kind of cough sirup-taste in it. Maybe he also ment the artichokes ... I know that the Spanish kitchen is delicious and full of flavours - so next time I'll try harder to get the 'original' taste.

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