If there is one thing everyone should know about me, it’s that Barcelona is one of my favorite places in the world. It is where I studied abroad for the best four months of my life from January – May 2014. Aside from all the amazing adventures I had there, the friends I made and the memories that I will cherish forever, one other thing stuck out to me: the food. In particular, paella.
Ever since I got home, my step-brother has been fixated on trying to recreate the paella I raved about. Since I’m on spring break and enjoying a stay-cation in my very exciting hometown (sense the sarcasm), this was the perfect opportunity to attempt to make my favorite dish from Spain.
Paella is a signature dish in Spain. There are three different types of paella: Valencian Paella named after the city it originated in; seafood paella; and mixed paella. It is basically a rice dish with vegetables, different kinds of seafood or meat all in a saffron and paprika based sauce. Total yumminess.
As you have seen from my previous post about my cooking fail, I am not always the best chef. I’m better if I follow a recipe. We followed this paella recipe exactly how it said to and it came out FANTASTIC. It brought me back to my days of living a care free life, drinking sangria all day in the most beautiful city. It looks much more complicated than it is, so don’t be scared!
Here are all the ingredients you will need:
Paella rice, pimenton (smoky paprika from Spain), Spanish olive oil, clam sauce, chicken stock, saffron, tomato paste, garlic, chorizo, peas, a lemon, onions, garlic, chives, parsley and any seafood or meat you want to add into it. I used clams, mussels and shrimp.
However, the key is having a paella pan. You can get them at Macy’s, Amazon, Williams-Sonoma or any place like that.
1. Prepare all the ingredients: cut up the chorizo, de-sand the seafood using cornmeal (a new technique I learned today), and cut up the onion and garlic.
2. Add a little bit of Spanish Olive Oil to the pan and let it heat up. When it is hot, add the chorizo, onion, garlic, saffron, paprika, pimenton, tomato paste and stir.
3. Add the chicken broth and clam sauce and stir as you go. The liquid should start to absorb a little and when it does, lower the heat and keep stirring the pot.
4. Add the seafood and cover. Let it sit for about 10-12 minutes to make sure all the seafood is cooked thoroughly and the mussels and clams have opened. If you want to add peas, put them in.
5. Garnish with parsley and chives and serve! Make sure you have it with some sangria!
Seriously, how amazing does this look? And it tasted amazing too! Give it a try and see how you like it!
If you have been to Spain, did it taste like the real thing? Did it bring you back? Or is it just never as good as the authentic paella? I would love to hear!
For a more in depth description of the recipe, it can be found here! Happy cooking!