A favorite Valencian tapa as well as a popular main dish, especially along the Costa Blanca. A cold beer might go best with this piquant tapa.
Clean and skin eels and cut into 1- to 1 1/2-inch pieces. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a casserole or skillet, add paprika, and stir in enough water to cover eels.
Bring to a boil and add pieces of eel. Meanwhile with a mortar and pestle or in an electric blender crush garlic, almonds, parsley, and saffron with enough olive oil to make a smooth paste.
Stir mixture into casserole, add salt to taste, and cook for about 20 minutes or until eels are done. Add more water if sauce thickens. Serve hot.
Variation: For an all-in-one meal or a main course, add peas, chopped carrots, or new potatoes (or all three) and serve over rice, as they do in Valencia.