As promised here is my Paella recipe. This dish has it’s origins in Spain, more accurately, Valencia, located on the east coast of Spain. Paella also happens to be one of my father’s favorite dishes. I have vague recollections of this dish from my time in Spain but whenever my father reminisces about living in Spain, somehow Paella always manages to get mentioned. There are many different ways to go about making this dish. You can go the all seafood route, a meat and vegetable route, or the one I took which is a mix of all the above. So there you have my inspiration for last nights amazing meal, a walk down memory lane which started off with me trying to figure out what to do with the boring looking chicken breasts I had defrosting in the fridge. I hope I did this fantastic dish justice. This recipe does take a bit more time than most of my other recipes, you will need approximately 2 hours but it is worth it for how much leftover food you have so do not be scared of all the ingredients and steps below 🙂
Helpful Tip: I put all the dry seasoning & spices in a small bowl so I could simply pour them in together and not have to fiddle around with various containers while cooking.
- 10 – 15 Raw Prawns (peeled)
- 3 Chicken Breasts (cubed)
- 2 Medium Chorizo (sliced) – I took mine out of the casing first
- ½ White Onion (chopped)
- 3 Garlic Cloves (chopped)
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
- 1 ½ Red Peppers (chopped)
- 4 Medium Carrots (sliced)
- 1 (796ml) Can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 Pinch Saffron
- 2 Cups Arborio Rice
- 4 Cups Boiling Water
- 1 Chicken Stock Cube
- 2 ½ Tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
- ½ Tsp Turmeric
- ½ Tsp Garlic Powder
- 2 Cups Frozen Peas
- ½ Cup Italian Parsley (chopped)
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Lime Wedges for Seasoning at the end
- In a large deep skillet or paella pan, melt the butter with the olive oil, toss in the onion and fry on high until it is slightly golden.
- Add in the garlic, carrots and red peppers then saute for 3-5 minutes.
- Add in the chicken breast and cook for approximately 5 minutes or until you can’t see any pink on the chicken.
- Pour in the entire can of tomatoes followed by the chorizo and stir until combined.
- Reduce the heat to medium, add in the paprika, chicken cube (crumbled), garlic powder, turmeric, cayenne and saffron stirring constantly to combine it all.
- Pour in the rice. Cook for about 5 minutes to allow the rice to be coated in all the sauce. Stir constantly.
- Add in 3 cups of the boiling water slowly and stir carefully to combine everything.
- Cover the pan and cook on low – medium for 20 minutes stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- Add in the leftover 1 cup of water slowly and combine.
- Cook for another 20 – 30 minutes stirring occasionally.
- The rice will get plump and slowly start to stick a bit to the bottom of the pan. This is totally fine and adds a great flavor to the dish, just don’t let it burn completely and stir every so often.
- Once most of the liquid has evaporated, toss in your raw prawns and place the cover back on to allow the prawns to cook. (approx. 5 mins)
- Once the prawns are pink, toss in your parsley and frozen peas. Stir to combine evenly.
- Once the peas are defrosted and hot your dish is ready. Add Salt & Pepper to taste.
I served mine up with some fresh lime wedges to squeeze on the dish at the table. It adds a great little burst of flavor. 🙂 Enjoy.
After seeing the title of this post all of you can now guess what tops my list of favorite animated movies. Yes, that’s right it is Ratatouille. The story in short is about a brave young mouse named Remy who makes his way to Paris and sets out to become a chef. Towards the end of the movie in order to impress a tough restaurant critic he cooks up this dish. This traditional French dish originally from Nice brings the critic back to his childhood and warms his heart. This is an incredibly simple meal to make and makes a great side dish or even a meal in itself. If you have seen the movie you will know that Remy takes great care and time arranging the veggies beautifully. I simply do not have that sort of time as I am sure many of you do not either so mine is slightly messier. The result is the same, a yummy hearty meal perfect for a cool autumn night. Typically this dish also calls for egg plant, I however am allergic to it so naturally this dish is sans egg plant 🙂 If you like you can always add it into yours.
- 2 Medium Zucchinis
- 1 Bell Pepper
- 1 Can of Tomato Paste
- 2 Garlic Cloves (minced)
- 4 Sprigs Thyme
- 1/4 Medium White Onion (chopped)
- 1 Tsp Seasoning Salt
- 1 Tsp Paprika
- 1 Tsp Fresh Cracked Pepper
- 1 Cup Hot Water
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- In a food processor, slice your zucchinis on a medium setting. Then slice up your bell pepper into strips.
- In a baking dish, put the onion and olive oil into the bottom.
- In a small bowl mix the garlic, thyme, spices and tomato paste with the water. Combine them all until the paste is dissolved. (using hot water will help dissolve the paste easier)
- Pour the tomato ‘sauce” into the bottom of the baking dish and mix with the onions and oil.
- Pre-heat your oven to 350F.
- Arrange your zucchini and pepper slices into the dish.
- Cover the dish with a piece of parchment paper then bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes.