I recently bought saffron-azafran that comes in 4 small capsules. Now what can I do with it besides paella?
Saffron is the most fabulous spice, with a rich earthy aroma.
Use it gently and reap the rewards.
Besides Paella, another obvious use is Risotto.
Much more sublime is Bouillabaisse (http://www.beyond.fr/food/bouillabais...) which uses Saffron in the broth as well as the Rouille. Other fish soups or Moules benefit from saffron in the broth.
Lamb or chicken braised with preserved lemon and saffron is truly sublime.
Also you might make a bread pudding with dried fruits and saffron scented milk in the custard.
It most uses I put wrap the saffron I'm using in tin foil and put the packet on the lid of a warm pot or in a dry fry pan and gently warm (or toast) it. I then grind it in a mortar or break it up with my fingetips into the liquid and let it steep.
Saffron is definitely a less is more thing. Too much can make things taste mediciney. The right amount give a great flavour and wonderful colour to food.
I've used saffron in alot of non-paella items, but most recently I made saffron-infused vodka and saffron mayonaise for poached salmon. My local bakery also makes great saffron buns and there's also saffron in my favorite Persian ice cream.
Do you like lobster ravioli? A nice cream sauce w/ a pinch of saffron and a dash of dry sherry brings it over the top.
In Spain, it is used in lots of bean dishes and soups. It goes especially nicely with garbanzos. Fabes con almejas (white beans with clams) is one of the dishes that I think makes the best use of saffron.
Risotto milanese. And bouillabaisse (or reasonable facsmile thereof) if you're feeling more ambitious. It's not uncommon in the fancier dishes of Northern Indian cuisine.
If you get desperate, you could always offer to touch up someone's Buddhist robes.:)
If you're into cooking Indian desserts, almost any milk based Indian dessert will taste heavenly with a little saffron in it. Kheer, barfi, sooji halwa, pedha...
I believe Moroccan stews also use saffron.
I love saffron too. If you have an ice cream maker try honey-saffron ice cream. I adapted a custard vanilla ice cream recipe and used mostly honey for the sugar (just did it to taste) then put a pinch of saffron in the warm custard before chilling it. It took on a lovely pale yellow color and would be great with fall fruit desserts.
make moroccan tagines
ice cream. i had great saffron gelato with candied pinenuts in italy a few months ago. gorgeous bright yellow color!
I'm also not a fan of saffron--can't stand the taste of the stuff. But there's an excellent recipe for Moroccan lemon chicken in Claudia Roden's Middle East cookbook that includes it (I substitute turmeric).
All you do is put the chicken in a pot with a chopped onion, salt and pepper, some cinnamon, some allspice (I think), a pinch of saffron, and a big handful each of fresh parsley and cilantro. Add water to just cover chicken, and cook till chicken falls apart. Clean, chop, and add a preserved lemon or two. Cook for another ten minutes. Serve over rice.
I think the recipe calls for a whole chicken, but I usually do it with four thigh/leg pieces. Very easy and delicious!
I second the bouillabaisse and rouille, fantastic. Last use of saffron was day before yesterday in homemade pasta, great colour and slight hint of flavour, and I don't care what anyone says you don't need the powdered stuff, the strands make the pasta look pretty!
I add saffron to my rice maker!
One of the great recipes I picked up at one of the kitchens I worked involved steeping daffron in warmed sherry vinegar, then using that, one egg yolk, a bit of garlic, honey, and some spanish olive oil for an aoili- great on fish & poultry (I fold a dollop into my paella, too)- and it tasted fantastic with grilled or raw vegetables.