This Paella is the perfect sunday family dinner or the star of a special dinner party. It has many ingredients and it looks a bit fussy, but it really is not. The key is to not overcook the seafood, add it near the end and from that point watch carefully.
When I am looking for something really special I make this Paella. I like to serve this with pitchers of white sangria or a spanish white wine and crusty baguette.
Here’s my recipe
1 (3-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Spanish chorizo sausages, thickly sliced
1 Spanish or white onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
Bunch flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped, reserve some for garnish
1 (15-ounce) can whole crushed tomatoes,
2 cups of Carnaroli or Arborio rice
6 cups of warm chicken stock
1 dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed
1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and de-veined
2 lobster tails cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup sweet frozen peas
Generous pinch saffron threads
2 Tbsp of smoked spanish paprika
Kosher salt or sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
Lemon wedges, for serving
Heat a paella pan or a large, shallow chef’s pan or frypan over medium-high heat. Cook the chorizo slices for a minute each side or until golden brown. Remove to a bowl and reserve.
Saute the chicken in the same pan for 2-3 minutes or until golden. Remove & reserve with the chorizo.
Add the paprika to the pan and sauté briefly to toast and release flavour.
Meanwhile heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the chicken stock to the boil and add the saffron threads. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a very low simmer.
Place the tomatoes, onion, garlic & parsley in a food processor, season with salt and puree until smooth. This is called the Soffrito which will the flavour the paella. Add the olive oil to the pan with the drippings and the paprika, and then the soffrito. Stir until most of the moisture has evaporated. This will take about five minutes. Add the rice and stir to coat. Cook until rice is glossy and has absorbed flavour from the sofritto.
Pour in about a third of the stock and stir to mix everything together. Add the chicken and chorizo and distribute evenly in the pan. Pour in the rest of the stock and reduce the heat to very low and cook for 10 minutes. Add the lobster, cook for another 10 minutes on low heat. Do not stir, just move the pan around on the element to make sure there is even heat distribution. Add the clams and continue cooking for another 10 minutes. Add the shrimp and frozen peas, continue t cook until clams have opened and lobster is done. When the rice has absorbed the liquid, the shellfish have opened and a crust has formed on the bottom and around the sides of the pan, the dish is done.
Remove from the heat and rest for a few minutes, covered.
Serve with lemon wedges, chopped parsley, crusty baguette and white sangria