Are you ready for a party? Mix up a pitcher of sangria and call your friends and neighbors!
A festive occasion calls for a big statement, and this paella is just that: a colorful rice dish bursting with clams, mussels and shrimp along with smoky chorizo and saffron for tons of flavor. You don’t need much else to serve alongside it, but you could make a green salad if you feel inspired.
Set the whole pan of paella on your picnic table, and bring out some crusty bread and wine glasses. Summer is just too short not to celebrate it with friends.
VIDEO! How to Make Seafood Paella
WHAT IS PAELLA?
The origins of paella are ancient, rooted in the area around Valencia, Spain near the Albufera Lagoon, where both fishing and rice growing dominated the region for centuries.
Paella was the food of farm workers who cooked dishes of rice over wood fires, embellished with whatever ingredients they could find.
The dish is named for the wide, shallow pan in which the paella is cooked. The word “paella” is from a Valencian dialect meaning “pan,” probably derived from the Latin word “patella” for pan.
DO I NEED A PAELLA PAN?
While you can buy a paella pan and even a special outdoor paella grill for cooking it, it’s easy enough to adapt the traditional paella method to our home kitchens without a lot of extra fuss.
Since I don’t possess a paella pan, I used the largest sturdy skillet in my collection of pans. A cast iron pan would be ideal but mine was not big enough and I found my heavy skillet worked just fine. Lacking a large skillet, you could also use a medium-size roasting pan (approximately 14×10 inches).
HOW TO MAKE PAELLA AT HOME
Although you can cook paella entirely indoors on top of the stove, when you consider paella’s wood-fired origins, it makes total sense to cook it outside on the grill. For this recipe, I started it on the stove indoors while the grill heated, and then finished it on the grill. Even, steady, medium heat is the goal.
THE BASIC INGREDIENTS FOR MAKING PAELLA
Paella is the mother of all the one-pot meals, so it makes a supreme party dish. Improvisation rules the day, since even in Spain the issue of what ingredients should go in paella is hotly disputed, making it impossible for foreigners, let alone Spaniards, to dictate them strictly.
Okay, I know I just said that improvisation is the name of the game, but here are a few guidelines:
The Paella Rice
Paella is essentially a rice dish, and the type of rice does make a difference. Spanish bomba rice, a medium-grained stubby rice that absorbs liquid well but maintains some firmness when it cooks, is preferred.
Since it is hard to find and pricey, you can substitute Italian Carnaroli, Calrose, or another short-grain rice.
The crispy bits! Once the stock comes to a simmer, don’t stir it. As the paella cooks, the rice stays on the bottom and forms a crusty golden bottom layer in the finished dish. This crust of rice is called socarrat and is coveted by true paella lovers. The vegetables rise to the top while cooking.
For this seafood paella, you can use fish or shellfish stock if you like and if you can find a good source for it, but I actually prefer chicken stock. It adds a depth of flavor, and as the shellfish cook, you get plenty of sweet, briny juices to flavor the rice. Be sure to taste the stock and season it with salt if necessary.
Saffron is a key ingredient, too. These orange-red threads are actually the dried stigmas of crocus flowers. Crumbled into a pot of hot stock, saffron adds an earthy, floral, and somewhat mysterious flavor to your paella. It imbues the rice with a gorgeous golden color, too.
Saffron is a fairly expensive spice, but thankfully you only need a few threads to season a whole dish of paella. It also keeps for a fairly long time as long if it’s stored in an airtight container and kept out of direct sunlight, so you don’t need to worry about using up your extra saffron right away.
Most well-stocked grocery stores should carry saffron, such as Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. Look for it in the spice section.
Paella starts with a sofrito—finely chopped onions, garlic, and tomatoes or red peppers sautéed gently in olive oil. It is akin to the Italian soffrito or French mirepoix. Sofrito lays the groundwork for all the flavors in the dish to mingle; think of it as priming a canvas before making a painting.
The Seafood and Chorizo
I chose shrimp, clams, and mussels for this seafood version of paella, and Spanish dry-cured chorizo for its smoky, meaty flavor. Chorizo can be a controversial add-in and not all Spanish cooks agree that it belongs in paella, so skip it if you like. You can also substitute other cooked sausages and add some smoked paprika to taste to achieve the desired flavor.
Thoroughly scrub the clams and mussels before cooking and discard any with cracked or broken shells.
MORE SPANISH RECIPES TO TRY!
- Spanish Baked Chicken
- Spanish Roasted Potatoes and Tomato Sauce
- Spicy Pork Stew with Chickpeas and Sausage
- White Gazpacho
Updated June 17, 2020 : We spiffed up this post with a brand new video. Enjoy!
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 8 bone-in chicken thighs, with skin
- Four 6-ounce sole fillets, halved lengthwise
- 2 large pinches of saffron threads
- 4 cups vegetable stock, chicken stock or low-sodium broth
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1 pound dry chorizo, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 8 small squid, bodies sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch rings and tentacles halved
- 2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups arborio or other short-grain rice
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 pound littleneck clams, scrubbed
- 1 pound mussels, scrubbed and debearded
- 1/2 pound lump crabmeat, well-drained and picked over
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
In a large bowl, mix the paprika, 1 tablespoon of the oil and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Add the chicken and toss. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Arrange the sole in a single layer in a shallow baking dish. In a bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of the oil with 1 pinch of the saffron. Drizzle the oil over the fish and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
In a saucepan, combine the vegetable stock with the remaining pinch of saffron and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, cover and keep warm.
In a 14-inch paella pan or cast-iron skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the chicken and cook over moderately high heat, turning, until browned all over, about 15 minutes transfer to a platter.
Add the chorizo to the pan and cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer the chorizo to the platter with the chicken. Pour off and reserve any excess fat in the pan leave a thin layer of fat coating the bottom. Add the squid and cook until just white throughout, about 2 minutes. Transfer the squid to the platter with the chicken.
Return 2 tablespoons of the reserved fat to the pan. Add the onion and garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Transfer the onion mixture to the platter.
Return 2 additional tablespoons of the reserved fat to the pan. Stir in the rice and cook over moderately high heat for 2 minutes. Add the chicken, chorizo, squid and onion mixture to the pan along with any accumulated juices. Stir in the peas. Gently pour the warmed stock into the pan. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.
Using tongs, nestle the clams and mussels into the rice. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Arrange the sole fillets and the crabmeat on the rice. Cover and cook for 5 minutes longer, until the sole is cooked through and the rice is tender. Remove the pan from the heat and let the paella stand for 5 minutes. Discard any mussels and clams that have not opened. Sprinkle the paella with the parsley and serve right away.
Learn To Cook Paella At Home
Paella started as a humble countryside meal, cooked by farmers and herders in the fields and mountains surrounding Valencia and Alicante. Now it is world-famous, a symbol of Spanish cuisine so recognizable that it has even become its own emoji. Making paella is an art but it&rsquos not impossible for a home cook &ndash it just takes some care and patience.
What You'll Need
The Pan: The proper cookware for making paella and other arroces is a round flat pan called &ndash you guessed it &ndash a paella. The best paella pans are steel stainless for minimal care, carbon steel for something more traditional &ndash which ensures that heat is evenly distributed. Pans can range in size from 10 inches, which will serve two people, to more than a meter, for serving the masses. Check out paella pans here.
The Rice: One of the keys to great paella is using the proper rice &ndash not just anything will do. Two Spanish varieties &ndash bomba and calasparra &ndash are favored for their unique ability to expand to 2-3 times their size, absorbing flavorful liquid as they grow, without getting soft or mushy. Buy our favorite Calasparra rice here.
The Ingredients: Get creative &ndash start with meat if you want, layer in evenly-cut vegetables, and you can even add a healthy amount of sofrito for extra depth. Garlic, saffron, rosemary, pimentón, bay leaves &ndash all will help add flavor to the rice, if used in balance.
The Liquid: Water is oftentimes the best for making a good paella, if you've built up enough flavor with your ingredients. If you happen to have a good homemade vegetable or meat stock on hand, use it &ndash you&rsquoll get a deeper flavor in the rice, but be sure to balance out adding salt. This is our favorite broth for making paella.
The Heat: Traditionally, paella is cooked over a wood fire outdoors &ndash oftentimes starting with logs of wood and ending with a burst of high heat from dried vine clippings. This gives the paella a wonderful wood smoky aroma which complements the addition of pimentón, and the final kick of high heat helps ensure a crispy socarrat. In the absence of an outdoor cooking space, gas or electric heat will do &ndash just make sure it&rsquos even under the pan.
The Timing: Once the rice is in the pan, it&rsquos time to set a clock and wait. This is both the easiest and most challenging moment of the process: patience is key. Every rice is different, based on its variety and its age, and oftentimes the best way to tell how long it should be cooked is to read the instructions on the bag.
Get that soccarat. Near the end of cooking, with just a few minutes remaining, crank the heat up &ndash that&rsquos how you&rsquoll get the delicious crunchy soccarat at the bottom of the rice.
Get Creative In The Kitchen
There is a time and a place for the traditional Valencian paella, made with rabbit, chicken, two kinds of beans, rosemary, and saffron. And then there&rsquos a time and place for everything else &ndash there are unlimited ways to construct an arroz, none of which are wrong. Get creative &ndash start with meat if you want, layer in evenly-cut vegetables, and you can even add a healthy amount of sofrito for extra depth. Garlic, saffron, rosemary, pimettón, bay leaves &ndash all will help add flavor to the rice, if used in balance. Here are two of our favorite recipes.
For the Salmorra:
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, preferably José Andrés Extra Virgin Olive Oil
12 cloves garlic, peeled
3 ñora chile peppers (or any other dried sweet chile pepper), seeded
One 16-ounces can plum tomatoes, drained
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
Heat the oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté until soft, about 2 minutes.
Add the chile peppers and toast, stirring, for about 3 minutes, then add the tomatoes and sugar.
Cook until the liquid evaporates and the mixture is a dark red-brown color, about 15 minutes. Stir in the paprika.
Transfer the mixture to a blender and purée. Pour into a bowl, and season with salt, to taste.
Notes: Salmorra may be kept in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 10 days. Drizzle the top with olive oil to keep sauce from drying out.
For the rice:
Extra virgin olive oil, preferably José Andrés Extra Virgin Olive Oil
8 large whole shrimp, peeled with heads and tails intact, deveined
4 ounces monkfish, cut into ½-inch cubes
2 ½ ounces fresh tuna, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 ounces fresh squid, cleaned and cut into ¼-inch rings
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
¼ cup Salmorra
1 cup Spanish bomba rice
Pinch of saffron
3 cups hot, high-quality seafood stock
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a 13-inch paella pan over high heat.
Add the shrimp and sear for about 1 minute on each side. Transfer shrimp to a plate. Pour 2 more tablespoons of the olive oil into the paella pan, add the monkfish, tuna and squid and sauté for 2 minutes.
Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the salmorra and rice and cook for 1 minute more, stirring to coat the rice with the sauce. Set a timer for 5 minutes, increase the heat to high and add the hot stock.
Bring to a boil, add the saffron and season with salt. Stir the rice during the first 5 minutes while boiling, then lower the heat and simmer for an additional 11 minutes. Do not stir the rice again as it may cause it to cook unevenly. After about 8 minutes, lay the reserved shrimp on top of the paella to finish cooking for last few minutes. The paella is finished when the rice has absorbed all of the liquid.
Remove the paella from the heat, cover with a clean kitchen towel and let the paella rest for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with spoonful&rsquos of aioli (garlic mayonnaise) and a green salad, if you like.
¼ cup Spanish extra virgin olive oil
2 yellow squash, cut in ½&rdquo cubes
1 medium eggplant, cut in ½&rdquo cubes
1 cauliflower, broken into florets
¼ pound wild mushrooms, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, diced
¼ cup Sofrito
1 cup dry white wine
Pinch of saffron, crushed
3 cups vegetable broth, like Aneto
1 cup Spanish bomba or calasparra rice
¼ cup fresh or frozen green peas
Sea salt, to taste
Allioli, for serving
In a 13-inch paella pan, heat the extra virgin olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the squash to the pan and brown it on all sides. Add the squash and cauliflower and cook for another 2-3 minutes, then add the mushrooms and garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Stir in the diced tomatoes and the sofrito and cook for a minute, then add the white wine and reduce everything by half.
Add the crushed saffron to the pan and then the broth. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then let it boil for 2-3 minutes. Add the rice and peas and stir until everything is combined, then add salt to taste. Check the box or bag the rice came in &ndash you&rsquoll want to cook the rice as long as is recommended (timing can vary by rice type &ndash always keep the bag!) You want the rice to be slightly al dente, with a nice firm center. Set a timer, and then don&rsquot stir as the rice is cooking. When you have 2 minutes left, increase the heat to high to get the crunchy soccarat at the bottom of the pan. When the rice is done, remove the pan from the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with allioli and share the soccarat with everyone &ndash no matter how much you want to save it exclusively for the chef (yourself).
How to Make Seafood Paella
Today we’re making a seafood paella. Paella really is very simple and straightforward to make, don’t let it intimidate you!
There are no rules about which seafood you use – feel free to choose your favorites. Commonly though a seafood paella will include a combination of shrimp, clams, mussels and often squid. Some will also add a few pieces of firm-fleshed fish to the mix. The choice is yours.
For our seafood paella recipe we’re using Barcelona’s very own brand of seafood paella cooking base: Aneto. We had the most amazing opportunity to tour Aneto’s entire factory in Spain (click the link to take our virtual tour) and for the last 3 years now Aneto has been the only brand of store-bought broth that we use and recommend. Why? Because they are the only brand that makes their broths the way we do in our own kitchen – with real, whole, fresh ingredients with absolutely nothing else added.
Aneto’s products can be found online as well as stores throughout the U.S. Here is a list of store locations.
Take a look at incredible combination of flavors. No need to add the all-important and expensive saffron to your paella – it’s already included in the cooking base. You will LOVE the vibrantly delicious, fresh and pure flavor of Aneto’s seafood paella cooking base.
Paella is an easy-to-make, one-pot dish that’s ready to serve in 30 minutes and cleanup is minimal. In fact, if you eat it the way it’s traditionally eaten, you don’t even need plates – everyone just digs in with a fork!
Paella is seriously one of the funnest dishes to make and once you’ve made it you’ll want to make it again and again. Give it a try and you’ll see what I mean!
Ready to make some seafood paella?
Let’s get started!
Heat the oil in a pan (I’m using a 38 cm paella pan, ideal for serving 4-5 people) and cook the onions until soft and translucent, 3-4 minutes. Add the bell peppers and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a minute.
Next add the rice. For the best results use what is called bomba rice. It’s a special strain of short-grain rice grown in Spain and is widely considered the best for paella. Bomba rice absorbs three times its volume in liquid (for most rice it’s two times), yet the rice grains remain nice and firm rather than becoming mushy. For making paella, bomba rice is superior. (If despite your very best efforts you can’t find bomba rice, use arborio rice.)
(You should have seen me at the airport on our way back from Spain, packing all the bags of bomba rice and premium smoked paprika into our suitcases as our weight limits would allow – it was quite the sight!)
Once you’ve added the rice give it a stir until the rice grains are covered in oil. (This accomplishes three things: 1) It helps prevent the rice from releasing too much starch while cooking, 2) it helps prevent the rice from sticking together, and 3) it helps improve the texture of the rice by preventing it from becoming mushy.) Add the white wine and bring it to a boil for one minute.
Add the peas and smoked paprika and stir to combine. Spread the rice mixture out on the bottom of the pan so that it’s evenly distributed. Pour in the Aneto Seafood Paella Cooking Base.
Simmer the paella over medium-low heat until half of the liquid is absorbed.
It’s time to add the seafood. This time we’re using jumbo shrimp, mussels and clams.
And now for the all-important question: Remove the heads or leave them on? That’s a choice I’ll leave to you. Many restaurants leave them on for presentation. I tend to take a more practical approach and that is to limit the fuss involved for my guests. For that reason you may even choose to remove the tails.
Position the seafood the way you want it to appear in the final dish. Add the piquillo peppers.
Continue to simmer over medium-low heat for about another 20 minutes until the seafood is cooked through. Turn the pan every few minutes to position the different section over the flame to create that crispy bottom crust, the socarrat.
Remove from the heat and tent the pan with some aluminum foil for about 10 minutes.
Remove the foil, garnish with chopped parsley and serve with lemon wedges. Your seafood paella is ready to serve!
Purée chile, parsley, and 6 Tbsp. oil in a food processor until smooth season chile-parsley oil with salt and set aside.
Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a 13" paella pan or a 12" cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Cook pancetta, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. Add yellow onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 8–10 minutes. Add garlic and both paprikas and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Carefully add Sherry, bring to a simmer, and cook, stirring constantly, until pan is almost dry, about 3 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until rice is coated and starting to turn translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in broth, orange zest, and saffron season with salt. Bring broth to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until rice is nearly tender, 12–15 minutes.
Pluck out zest. Nestle clams into rice in center of pan and cook until clams begin to open, 12–15 minutes. Cover pan with foil and simmer until rice is al dente and clams open (discard any that don’t), 8–10 minutes. Remove from heat (keep covered) and let rice steam 10 minutes.
While paella cooks, heat a grill pan over medium-high. Separately, toss spring onions, haricots verts, and prawns with 1 Tbsp. oil each in bowls season with salt and pepper. Grill spring onions, turning occasionally, until greens are charred and bulbs are tender, about 5 minutes. Next, grill haricots verts, turning occasionally, until lightly charred and tender, about 2 minutes, then grill prawns until cooked through and shells are charred, about 3 minutes per side. Finally, grill lemons until charred, about 1 minute per side.
Arrange spring onions, haricots verts, and prawns over paella. Drizzle dish with reserved chile-parsley oil and squeeze some juice from grilled lemons over. Place remaining wedges on top of paella and serve.
The Secret to a Perfect Seafood Paella with Socarrat
First thing is first, make sure you use high-quality ingredients to make a great paella, fresh seafood, Spanish round rice and Spanish saffron. The second thing is to make sure your paella has Socarrat, the beautiful slightly burnt rice at the bottom of the pan. If you achieve socarrat, you have made a perfect paella.
In this Authentic Spanish Seafood Paella Recipe, I will teach you how to achieve this technique. Watch the video below on how to make an Authentic Spanish Seafood Paella Recipe or check out the recipe card below, which you can print.
Equipment I Used to Make this Recipe:
Wood Cutting Board
We made this last night, following the recipe almost exactly. The only change we made was using chicken stock rather than water, assuming it would bring more flavor. The meal was excellent!
In the future, we plan to use sliced chorizo rather than ground, and we plan to try another user's suggestion of making stock out of the shrimp tails. we also under-salted this the flavors didn't pop quite as much right away, but a little extra salt afterwards brought the flavors through. We'd double the batch next time, too, so there would be more leftovers!
Loved the process and the end result. Definitely recommend as way to enjoy some time cooking with your spouse/partner!
We made this tonight and it was excellent. We doubled it and made two paella pans full, and dropped one off for a neighbour. I just hope our teenagers don't clean up all the leftovers tonight so that we can have some for lunch tomorrow.
I have not tried this recipe but and agree that there are many ways of making paella I think some of the suggestions made by Chris Berg would improve the recipe and I agree, no arborio rice.
My puzzlement, however, is that the recipe starts by preheating the oven to 350, but I cannot see where in any step it is put into the oven. What did I miss? Every step has the ingredients cooked on the stove.
Recipe fixes needed to make this better: Use SPANISH chorizo, and slice, keeping them in rings instead of loosely crumbled. For MUCH better flavor, use shrimp or chicken stock INSTEAD of the 1.5 cups of water by simmering the shrimp shells and chicken bones that seem to have been discarded. Why discard the oil in step 2, or saute the chicken then?? Why not cook the shrimp in the same chorizo drippings? Why not cook the (RAW) chicken in that oil instead of cooking it in a different way that has no additional flavor? Why not use chicken thighs or drumsticks instead of boneless cooked pieces that should be sauteed and then cooked with the rice and its liquid to add flavor, as would sauteing finely chopped onions and red pepper strips to add color and flavor. Seems that several steps can be eliminated or changed to add more flavor. No garnish with yellow lemons , green peas, and or red pepper strips. Why no paprika or cayenne pepper ? Just asking.
6 Add the stock and seafood
Pour in 400ml of the warm prawn stock plus the saffron and its soaking water. Stir, bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes without any further stirring, then arrange the monkfish, mussels and peeled prawn on top of the rice, pushing them down well into it but otherwise leaving it undisturbed.
6 Stir in the stock and saffron, then cook undisturbed for 10 minutes, before adding the rest of the seafood Photograph: Dan Matthews/The Guardian
Receta de Paella de Marisco - Seafood Paella Recipe
Heat broth in a large pot. Stir in saffron. Pat fish and shrimp dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and let sit 10 minutes. Use a mortar and pestle to mash parsley, garlic, thyme and 1/8 tsp salt into a paste stir in paprika. Add water if necessary to form a paste.
Heat 6 tbsp of oil in 15" paella pan over medium high heat and quickly brown the fish 1-2 minutes. Do not fully cook. Remove to warm platter. Add remaining 2 tbsp of oil, onion, scallions and bell pepper to paella pan and cook until the vegetables are slightly softened. Raise heat, add tomato and cook until it becomes sauce-like, 2 to 5 minutes. Pour in the hot broth and bring to a boil. Sprinkle the rice evenly across the pan. Boil for 3 minutes, stirring rice and rotating pan occasionally. Add all reserved fish (but not shrimp). Stir in parsley paste. Taste for salt. Do not stir after this point. Lower the heat, continue to simmer until rice is no longer soupy but enough liquid remains to continue cooking the rice (about 10 min.). Add extra liquid if necessary.
Arrange shrimp, clams and mussels over rice, placing edges of mussel and clam shells so they open facing up. Cook, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes until rice is almost done. Remove pan from the heat and cover with foil. Let sit 10 minutes. Garnish with lemon wedges and serve with fresh alioli.
Having eaten a fabulous paella mariscos at La Cueva restaurant in Seville, Spain and realizing with this coronavirus pandemic it will be a few years before I can go back, I decided to search for a recipe. This recipe is amazingly close in flavor and texture and presentation to that original in Seville. While it takes a few hours with prepping and cooking it is so worth the effort. My kitchen filled with the wonderful cooking aromas of Spain. Make sure you use bomba rice as it can take all the heat and all the liquid where American long grain rice would disintegrate in the process. My family loved it!
Thank you so much, La Tienda, for this great recipe! My husband and I visited your restaurant with friends two years ago, and the dinner inspired me to purchase a paella pan and start experimenting with Spanish cooking. (I even consulted your staff via email before purchasing my pan, and you folks were so helpful even though we live halfway across the country in Texas.) My first paella effort was rather boring and unsatisfying, so I knew I needed to find a better recipe. that's when I came across your seafood paella recipe. It was so good and really delicious. I have much more confidence now in working with the pan, knowing when to stir, when to add extra liquid, and how to manage the seafood at the end. I think I'm even ready to cook for friends next time. Thank you La Tienda. I hope we make it back to Williamsburg again!
Made this recipe tonight, just amazing! I went all out with the seafood though. I added 2 small Maine lobster tails and claws, jumbo shrimp, Arctic clams, smelt for the fish, calamari rings, and sea scallops. With the extra seafood, I think 6 people can eat it. But luckily, it's just the husband and me. He's gonna love it!
This recipe is superb! My whole family enjoyed it! I didn't find the seafood broth so I used chicken broth instead and it was so amazing! I used a giant caldero since I do not own a paella pan yet and it was perfect! Fresh seafood medley and some lobster tails made my paella amazing! I wish I could post my pictures. This will be a normal dish from now on! Thank you so much!
- 3 cups Homemade Chicken Stock, or canned low-sodium chicken broth, skimmed of fat
- 2 cups low-sodium clam juice
- Pinch of saffron
- 1 cup sugar-snap peas, tough strings removed, cut in half on the bias
- 2 links chicken sausage, cut into 1/2-inch rounds
- 12 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 12 squid, (about 1 pound), cleaned and cut into 1-inch rings
- 1 medium onion, peeled and finely diced
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch-long matchsticks
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch-long matchsticks
- 1 pound uncooked paella rice
- 1 pound cockles and mussels
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 6 plum tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Olive-oil cooking spray
Place stock, clam juice, and saffron in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat set aside.
Prepare an ice bath. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil, and blanch sugar snap peas until bright green and just tender, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer peas to ice bath let cool. Drain, and set aside.
Coat a paella pan (or a 6-quart Dutch oven that measures 11 inches in diameter and 5 inches in height) with cooking spray set over medium-high heat. Add sausage, and cook until well browned, turning, about 5 minutes.
Add shrimp, and cook 1 1/2 minutes. Add squid, and cook until opaque, about 1 1/2 minutes more. Transfer seafood and sausage to a plate, and set aside.
Add onion, garlic, and bell peppers to paella pan saute until onions are translucent, about 3 minutes. Add uncooked rice saute until translucent, 1 to 2 minutes more. Add 4 cups reserved stock mixture bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low, and cover. Cook until most liquid has been absorbed and the rice is just tender, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, place remaining cup of stock mixture, cockles, and mussels in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Cover, and bring to boil. Cook until all shells have opened, 2 to 3 minutes discard any that remain closed.
Add paprika, black pepper, tomatoes, shrimp, squid, and sausage to rice mixture combine. Add cockles, mussels, and cooking liquid to mixture, being careful to leave behind any residue in saute pan. Stir in parsley garnish with peas. Serve immediately.
Silvia’s Summer Seafood Paella
As the onions and peppers began to sizzle in olive oil, the excitement mounted. Silvia gracefully tossed in the mussels, followed by the clams and calamari. Once they opened up, she removed them from them pan.
Then fried tomato sauce was added to the pan, followed by stock — a lobster stock infused with saffron.
This summer seafood paella was getting better and better by the minute.
The lobsters were next, and it was dramatic.
The rice was added sometime between the stock and the lobsters.
The rice was Bomba rice , which is a Spanish short-grained rice that when cooked, expands in width, and is able to absorb three times its volume in liquid. (Silvia said she’d had it sent from Valencia, Spain just to make her Summer Seafood Paella!)
As far as summer seafood recipes go, this was shaping up to be one of the most exciting and beautiful I’ve ever seen.
After the stock and before the lobster, it started raining!
No big deal, though. Someone quickly placed a big umbrella on a stand over Silvia, the pan, and the prep.
By the time the paella was ready, it was pouring.
It took a few people to bring the paella into a tented tennis court, which was the dance floor at the wedding the night before.
I was too busy taking pictures and enjoying the “show” to ask too many questions about measurements. I’m pretty certain that Silvia makes this seafood paella recipe by memory — it seemed like second nature to her.