Speedy Spanish Pepper & Saffron Rice

Cooking time
Serves2 people
Speedy Spanish Pepper & Saffron Rice

A panful of sunshine, spiced with golden saffron and smoky paprika and lifted with a squeeze of lemon, this rice dish is packed with a rainbow of organic peppers and sweet slices of tender fennel.


  • 2 onions
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • A pinch of saffron
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 150g white basmati rice
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 300ml boiling water
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1. Peel the onions and thinly slice them. Trim the root and dry ends from the fennel (keep any soft fronds for later). Halve the fennel and thinly slice it. Halve the peppers and scoop out the membrane and seeds. Thinly slice them. Peel the garlic cloves and crush or finely grate.
2. Pour 1 tbsp oil into a large pan and warm over a medium heat. Slide in the chopped onions, fennel and peppers. Sprinkle in a little salt and pepper. Fry for 5 mins, stirring occasionally, till softened.
3. Stir the grated garlic into the pan, along with 1 tbsp fennel seeds, 2 tsp smoked paprika and a pinch of the saffron powder. Cook for a further 1 min.
4. Tip the rice into the pan. Crumble in the stock cube. Pour in 300ml boiling water and stir well to combine. Bring to the boil, then pop a lid on the pan and reduce to a gentle simmer. Cook for 15-20 mins, till the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender.
5. Finely grate the lemon zest. When the rice is cooked, squeeze in the lemon juice and sprinkle in the zest. Stir well till well mixed. Taste the rice, and add a little more salt and pepper if needed.
6. Spoon the pepper and saffron rice onto a couple of warm plates and serve topped with any reserved fennel fronds.
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