Paella

My logo is up there now, YAY!!! 🙂 It was made by my former (designer) colleague, Sierra. Thanks Sierra!!! 😀 We miss having a User Experience Designer here in HK! 😛

Paella is one of my favorite food. It is amazing! I have loved it since I was a little girl and I have not even tasted an authentic Paella yet (I really have to schedule a getaway with my husband and head to Spain!). What’s in an authentic Paella? I have researched this and it just drove me crazy so I used these as my inspiration: Almanac news and Market Manila.

Paella can be intimidating to cook, I have only started to make this last year. The most time-consuming part is the preparation of the ingredients but once those are clean and seasoned, just sauté, simmer and it’s done.

Marketman is right to say that the sofrito makes it much much better. I turned the heat on low, heated 2/3 cup of olive oil and put in diced yellow onion and let that simmer for about 15 minutes then added 5 minced garlic for about 5 minutes and added diced half red and green bell peppers and 2 diced tomatoes and let all that simmer for about 25 minutes. Stirring everything every 5 minutes to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom.

While the sofrito was cooking, I prepared all the other ingredients by slicing and dicing then seasoning them with salt (not iodized), freshly ground pepper and paprika. I had way too much meat and seafood for one batch so I saved half of it and made another batch of paella after I made this one. You can use just half of these or more, these were enough for two batches.

  • 1 squid, sliced into rings
  • 200g shrimp, shelled (keep shells)
  • 300g shrimp, antenna and legs removed
  • 2 chicken breast fillet, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 pork tenderloin, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 120g Spanish chorizo, sliced into coins
  • 6 cups chicken broth, boiled with 15 strands of saffron
  • 400g clams, boiled in 1 cup chicken broth (same chicken broth as above)
  • Shrimp shell and heads boiled in the broth of the clams+chicken (above)
  • 10pcs green beans, ends cut

When the sofrito is done, everything should look soft; the bell peppers and tomatoes have gone soft, I took my immersion blender and made it into a smoother sauce.

I heated up the pan, added a little bit of oil and start sautéing the chorizo until they have toasted a bit then the pork tenderloin until they have changed color then the chicken until they had changed color. I set those aside and then sautéed shrimp and then squid and combined the meat with the seafood.

Next, I added 1/2 cup of Valencia rice and sautéed that for a bit then added 1/2 cup sofrito and 1/2 cup seafood broth and 2 cups of chicken broth. Let that simmer for about 15 minutes then stir that a bit. Next, I top that with beans and shrimp and I let the bottom side change color and I flip the shrimp so the other side gets cooked too. 🙂 I would cover the pan for about 5 minutes just to ensure that the rice at the top gets cooked too along with the beans and shrimp. Before I turn off the stove, I top it with clams. DONE!

Paella is one of the most beautiful food I know. Everything I want and need is in this pan. HA!

Paella

Try making Paella at home, it’s so so so so good! My husband and I finished the contents of this pan in one sitting — well, we didn’t have a proper breakfast anyway and it’s already 5PM!

Paella-upclose

Notes: There are a few rules that I like to break because…I.Can’t.Help.It! I don’t like stuff sticking to the pan, I don’t want to end up with raw shrimp, green beans and rice (those on top). I can hear Gordon Ramsay shouting at me, “THIS.IS.RAW!!!!!!!!”.

  • Paella should not be cooked in a non-stick pan. [I can explain, I bought a paellera! I did…but I bought a VERY big one so I couldn’t use it at home. :(]
  • It should not be covered because the rice should not steam. [I do not get how they cook this when there’s no broth covering everything anymore, how will the rice cook thoroughly?]
  • Once you’ve added broth and evenly distributed the rice, you should not stir it. [I stir to make sure nothing is sticking in the bottom and to make sure the rice at the top goes to the bottom so they can cook thoroughly.]

My husband is my photographer when I am too busy in the kitchen, this is what teamwork looks like. Aaaawwww!

Paella-PicturePicture

Paella

(Prep Time: 30 minutes | Cooking Time: 1 hour 15 minutes (Sofrito: 45 minutes + Paella (one batch): 30 minutes))

Paella (one batch – 10-inch pan):

  • 1/2 cup sofrito (recipe below)
  • 2 1/2  to 3 cups of chicken broth boiled in at least 7 strands of saffron
  • 200g clams, boiled in 1 cup of chicken broth (above) until shells open
  • 100g shrimp, shelled (keep shells)
  • about 60g Spanish chorizo, sliced into coins
  • 1/4 pork tenderloin, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 chicken breast fillet, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 squid, sliced into rings
  • 1/2 cup Valencia rice (I used El Avion brand)
  • 150g shrimp, antenna and legs removed
  • 5pcs green beans, ends cut
  • sea/lake salt (not iodized salt)
  • freshly ground pepper
  • paprika
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  1. Prepare all ingredients for sofrito and make it according to instructions below. (Sofrito section is down there)
  2. Prepare all other ingredients while sofrito is simmering away. Season meat and seafood with salt, pepper and paprika.
  3. Boil 3 cups of chicken broth with strands of saffron.
  4. Get 1 cup of boiled chicken broth and boil clams until they open, set clams aside.
  5. In the pot where you boiled the clams, boil shrimp shell and heads for about 10 minutes and pour the broth and shrimp shell and heads through a sieve while using a spoon to squeeze the shrimp’s juices out.
  6. Once sofrito is ready, heat 1tsp olive oil in a shallow flat-bottomed pan and sauté chorizo coins until it changes color and its oil comes out and you end up with orange-y oil.
  7. Add pork tenderloin into the pan and sauté until it’s color changes on all sides.
  8. Add chicken fillets and sauté until it changes color.
  9. Set all meat aside.
  10. In the same pan, sauté shelled shrimp and then add the squid.
  11. Add back the meat into the pan and pour Valencia rice then sauté them.
  12. Add 1/2 cup sofrito, stir to let everything combine.
  13. Add 2 1/2 cups of broth and mix everything together, distributing rice evenly (I mixed seafood broth and chicken broth, using 1 cup seafood broth and 1 1/2 cup chicken broth). Let this simmer for 15 minutes.
  14. (Optional) Stir the contents of the pan so the rice at the top will be cooked.
  15. Top with green beans and shrimp while pushing them downward. When shrimp changes color, flip it over to cook the other side.
  16. *If the rice is drying out and rice is not cooked yet, add 1/4 cup of chicken broth. If it is not drying out, there’s no need to add broth. Add broth bit by bit, we don’t want it to be soupy.
  17. (Optional) Cover the pan to cook the rice at the top as well as the shrimp and beans.
  18. Serve paella in pan. Have salt and pepper mills on the table. It’s so nice to have freshly ground pepper and salt to top what you have on your plate. Also, have wedges of lemon so your guests can squeeze ’em, makes it so much better.

Sofrito (Makes 2 cups):

  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 big yellow onion, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 big red bell pepper or 1 small one, diced
  • 1/2 big green bell pepper or 1 small one, diced
  • 2 big ripe tomatoes, seeds removed and diced
  1. In a small pan, heat the olive oil on low heat.
  2. Add onion and let it simmer until it has wilted and translucent (about 15 minutes).
  3. Add garlic and let it simmer for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add bell peppers and tomatoes, mix everything together and stir every 5 minutes to ensure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan. Simmer for about 25 minutes.
  5. When everything looks soft, get an immersion blender (or pour it into your blender) to make a smoother sauce. (if you don’t have a blender, it is absolutely fine!)

*I freeze left over sofrito.

One batch makes 2-3 servings

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4 responses to “Paella

  1. Yum! Your paella looks delicious! I haven’t made one for a long time now. And it’s always my favorite dish to order whenever it’s on the menu. Your paella looks wonderful, Lorely!

    • Thakn you Nami! 🙂 Coming from you, it means a lot! I love love love paella and would want to cook it more often…but then it won’t be too special anymore! Haha! 🙂 Can’t wait for you to make paella and your beautiful pictures! Oh, and we are excited for your “project”!

  2. Pingback: 7 países e sua gastronomiaTp-M de Mulher | Tp-M de Mulher·

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