The August Bank holiday weekend is coming up and every year since I can remember (except for last year, as I was about to have baby Emilia) I have been on my holidays somewhere hot, sunny and gorgeous.
Spain, Andalusia, the pueblo blanco – Acros, Rhonda, Cadiz are some of my favourite places to be and this year for no good reason I am here in Ireland too !!!! So this weekend I am going to vicariously live my Spanish dream holiday through my delicious paella.
Paella or to pronounce it correctly ‘pah-ey-yah’ is a traditional Spanish but especially Valencian dish which originated back when the romans brought steel and the moors brought rice to Spain. It is the double “ll” pronunciation we get wrong all the time !!
Paella is one of those one-pan meals that, if done correctly, is something truly outstanding.
The Spanish believe you are not actually making paella properly if you don’t follow some simple rules but instead something called arroz con cosca….. rice with stuff!!!!
They are super protective of their paella and all the ceremony and tradition that goes with it. They look at it in Valencia like their national symbol and they even got their own emoji back in 2015.
Traditionally it is a real festival food, massive big ‘pay-eh -yah’ and in the middle of the street and a bit like the old bbq culture here in Ireland the men traditionally like to do it !!
Good paella has several components that create several layers of flavor, making each and every flavor very distinct from the other. You don’t want to skimp on the ingredients and you want to give it the time and love it deserves. I can promise that if you do so, you’re going to have one outstanding pan of food.
Have a great Bank Holiday weekend,
With fun and deliciousness,
What You'll Need
Serves 4 /6
3 tbsp olive oil
2/3 cloves garlic
1/2 red pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
2/3 chicken fillets
200g tiger prawns
100g squid & mussels and clams ( optional )
400g paella rice
1.2L chicken stock
1 pinch saffron ( or cheat – 1 tsp turmeric & tsp smoked paprika )
50g fresh peas ( seasonal ) ( frozen petit pois are perfect )
Paella pan or shallow frying pan
How to Do It
- 1Prepare your mise en place.
Peel and dice the onion and garlic.
Dice the peppers.
Dice the chorizo and chicken into cubes.
Weigh out the rice
Boil the kettle and make the stock.
- 2Heat the oil in the pan - add in the onion and garlic and cook off for 5 mins over a gently heat to allow to caramelise and soften.
- 3Then add in the chorizo, pepper, smoked paprika and tomato puree. Cook over a medium to high heat for 5 mins until the fat & flavour renders out of the chorizo and the chicken develops a lovely golden brown crust.
- 4Sprinkle in the rice and stir for 2mins over a high heat. You want the rice to crisp and crackle.
- 5Infuse the saffron in the stock and pour in. Turn the heat up to high and get it bubbling for 10mins.
Gently stir at the edges if sticking but do not stir the whole thing.
- 6Pop the prawns and calamari & mussels & clams on top. Cover with foil and pop in the oven for 10 minutes.
- 7Remove from oven and rest for 5-10mins.
Serve and enjoy.