Paella is definitely our favourite Spanish dish and not only is it incredibly tasty but its all cooked in one pan so there is less washing up too.
There are different versions of paella all over Spain, each province seems to have its own take on Paella with a local twist and its interesting to try all the different specialities when travelling around Spain
I have been trying to perfect my paella recipe ever since arriving in Spain and I have to say its getting better each time. when we first arrived I remember our Spanish neighbours celebrating a fiesta with their family and the smell coming from their paella cooking away in their garden was out of this world, I was determined then to try and perfect it myself
Some people love seafood paella and some prefer chicken. In Spain rabbit is used quite often but I’ve had pet rabbits so that isn’t something I would cook myself. although I did accidentally eat rabbit paella once from a giant street paella, tasted lovely until I realised the bones were not chicken ones….eeekkkk,
The recipe I will share with you here will give you options for both seafood and chicken & chorizo, you wouldn’t find chorizo in a traditional Spanish paella but it does taste good so I always add it when cooking paella with chicken.
Pick your meat/fish options below.
3 large Chicken breasts or 4 thughs & Chorizo
Seafood – 2 portions of Cod, 8 King Prawns (whole or prepared), 12 Mussels, small bag of Clams
Red onion x 2
1 large red pepper
Bunch of Asparagus
4 x garlic cloves
500 ml Chicken stock
Paella rice – Arroz Redonda – approx 400 gms
2 tbsp Paella Seasoning or/and you can make your own seasoning with the spices below
2 tsp Smoked paprika
3 tsp Paprika
1 tsp Cayenne pepper
2 tsp ground Saffron
2 tsp Garlic powder
2 tsp Mixed herbs
1 tsp Cumin
A few splashes of white wine (optional)
Olive oil for frying
I have an outdoor paella pan that we cook off the gas canister but you don’t need any fancy equipment as long as you have some kind of large heavy bottomed pan you will be fine.
I would recommend preparing all your ingredients before hand as you will spend a lot of time stirring your paella. roughly chop your onions, peppers & garlic, cut the woody end off your asparagus and chop each peice in half.
I start by heating a large glug of oilive oil in the pan and adding the onions and peppers, frying till they are starting to brown.
I would then add the chicken to the pan, frying till its all sealed before adding the chorizo & garlic. The chorizo will let off a lovely smokey aroma when it starts to cook. if you are adding a little vino blanco, now is the time to do so.
Now its time to add the rice, aim for a good handful per person, I then add an extra one for good measure! Allow the rice time to soak up all the juices and take on some colour before starting to add the spices, you want the ingredients in the pan to be well mixed with the spices, allow to cook for 5 minutes before adding the chicken or vegetable stock slowly into the mix whilst stirring it all together.
You will need to keep stirring the paella continuously for the first 20 minutes or so and adding extra stock or boiling water if needed to avoid the rice sticking to the pan.
If you are making a seafood paella now is the time to add the fish, allow that to cook for around ten minutes before adding the mussels & clams, cook for another 5 minutes before adding your king prawns to the top, pushing them into the mix so they can cook well and turning over after a few minutes to ensure they are cooked all the way through.
Serve with a quarter of lemon, crusty bread and salad.
Enjoy your Paella, let me know if you enjoyed cooking and eating it.