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Classic Spanish Paella

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Classic Spanish Paella

This Classic Spanish Paella rivals any restaurant paella! Sometimes nothing compares to good home cooking, and recipe by a beloved mother | https://cafedelites.com

Classic Spanish Paella

This Classic Spanish Paella rivals any restaurant paella! Sometimes nothing compares to good home cooking, and a recipe by a beloved mother.

You know when a recipe so good, you have two share it? Like, HAVE TO? I mean, I share them all, but THIS one? This is one of those recipes that I was brought up with, and have absolutely no idea why I haven’t posted it until now. A handed down recipe for Classic Spanish Paella.

Because WHO doesn’t love a GOOD PAELLA?!

This recipe comes to you from my mother’s kitchen. Not only is she the most generous, loving, selfless, and giving human being,,,she is an incredible cook and a genius in the kitchen! In fact, I blame her for this blog 😉 Without her inspiration to cook GOOD FOOD, putting flavour above all else, Cafe Delites would NOT exist.

I was one of those kids who had friends breaking down my door whenever they smelt her famous roast lamb cooking away in the oven…an aroma that would drive the neighbourhood dogs bonkers. They never came to visit ME of course… they came for her food.

True story. Its okay. I’ve moved on.

SO anyway…this paella recipe is being handed down for you all. Now, before we jumped in to share her recipe, which was shared to her by some very special Spanish friends a looooooooong time ago — and adapted only a little since then — we jumped on the good old internet to, I guess, research what’s out there.

Well, we were in for some very entertaining reading, finding recipes with list after list of SO.MANY.RULES! And in the same breath, THOSE rules were then said to be NON RULES! Like, QUEEEE? WHAAAAA….?!

What does that even mean?

Off she went, trailblazing into the kitchen, mumbling something about NO RULES, and proceeded to cook up her best paella ever in the history of my life.

Too dramatic?

The ONLY real tip I’m going to share with you is this. NO CHORIZO, for the love of god. Not a rule, as such, but again, something she’s never heard of in her 50+ years of Paella eating and cooking…and eating.

Having said that, there are MANY different types and styles of Paella, and each region in Spain has their own way of making it. THEN people of the same region adapt it to their own tastes. Like everything.

I don’t think ANY recipe can be called the ‘real deal’ whatever anymore, since people adapt and change recipes from their grandmothers and great grandmothers everywhere, to suit their own tastes.

But what I do know, is that this one comes close.

Some Tips:

  • The seafood added in this recipe is ALL OPTIONAL! Don’t like Mussels? Don’t add them! Love clams instead? Add them instead! Don’t like shrimp? Replace with something else. Adapt it to your own preference.
  • Chicken can be replaced with pork if you prefer.
  • SEAFOOD can be left out and replaced with all chicken! (See where I’m going with this?) Just add an extra 2 large chicken thigh fillets, or more depending on how many people you are serving. Use this One Pan Spanish Chicken And Rice (Arroz Con Pollo) recipe as reference!
  • Rice. My mother ALWAYS uses with medium grain or jasmine rice. That is the best rice that works incredibly well with this recipe, and is easily accessible in every supermarket in the world. For this reason, I’m listing these options. Arborio rice? NO! You will get a smushy risotto! This is PAELLA, not risotto.
  • Please, if you can help it, NO TINNED TOMATOES! Fresh vine ripened tomatoes give the BEST flavour that can’t be replaced. Of course, if you only have canned, then use them, BUT we personally prefer fresh.
  • We make our own fire roasted peppers by placing them on direct flame over a gas cooker or stove top, until they char and the skin begins to crease and sometimes peel. If you’re not comfortable doing this, store-bought is fine to use.
  • ENJOY!

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Classic Spanish Paella
 
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This Classic Spanish Paella rivals any restaurant paella! Sometimes nothing compares to good home cooking, and recipe by a beloved mother.
Author: Karina – Cafe Delites
Serves: 6

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper (capsicum), diced into small pieces
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 large-sized tomatoes, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 10-12 mussels, scraped and cleaned properly
  • 8-ounces | 250 g calamari rings
  • 4 cups chicken (or fish) broth/stock*
  • 2 cups medium grain or jasmine rice
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 1 teaspoon saffron powder (or 1 teaspoon saffron threads)
  • 21-ounces (600 grams) shrimp (prawns)**
  • 2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf chopped parsley
  • Fire roasted bell peppers (capsicum) strips

Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large sized non-stick pan or well seasoned skillet (or a paella pan if you have one), over medium heat. Fry onion, garlic and capsicum together; cook until onion is transparent (about 3 minutes). Add in the chicken and fry until chicken is golden on all sides. Add in the chopped tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste. Cook the tomatoes for 5 minutes until they release liquid and the tomatoes begin to create a sauce.
  2. Add the mussels (if using), and calamari rings, allow to cook for a further 5 minutes. Pour in the stock (or broth), the rice, peas and saffron. Mix all ingredients until well combined.
  3. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat and cover to allow MOST of the liquid to absorb into the rice, while stirring occasionally to prevent rice from sticking and burning to the pan underneath. (Cook until the rice is ALMOST cooked through.)
  4. Add in the prawns, mixing them through the rice, and cover again to allow the prawns and rice to cook completely.
  5. Once cooked, sprinkle with the parsley. Place capsicum strips over the top of the paella for enhanced flavour to serve. Drizzle with a small amount of olive oil over the top before serving.
  6. Serve!

Notes
*Homemade. fish stock gives paella the best flavour, however, chicken stock is the next best thing. We don’t really like store-bought fish stock, but if it’s what you have, try it! You might like it!
**Use shrimp (or prawns), that you prefer to eat. Fully shelled is ideal and traditional in paella, but we prefer peeled, tail on shrimp. You can also use full peeled and tail off if you prefer.

The seafood added in this recipe is ALL OPTIONAL! Don’t like Mussels? Don’t add them! Love clams instead? Add them instead! Don’t like shrimp? Replace with something else. Adapt it to your own preference.
Chicken can be replaced with pork OR left out all together.
SEAFOOD can be left out and replaced with all chicken! (See where I’m going with this?) Just add an extra 2 large chicken thigh fillets, or more depending on how many people you are serving.
Rice. My mother ALWAYS uses with medium grain or jasmine rice. That is the best rice that works incredibly well with this recipe, and is easily accessible in every supermarket in the world. For this reason, I’m listing these options. Arborio rice? NO! You will get a smushy risotto! This is PAELLA, not risotto.
Please, if you can help it, NO TINNED TOMATOES! Fresh vine ripened tomatoes give the BEST flavour that can’t be replaced. Of course, if you only have canned, then use them, BUT we personally don’t like the flavour.
We make our own fire roasted peppers by placing them on direct flame over a gas cooker or stove top, until they char and the skin begins to crease and sometimes peel. If you’re not comfortable doing this, store-bought is fine to use.
ENJOY!

3.5.3226

 

© 2017, Karina. All rights reserved. CAFE DELITES. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to share this recipe, please provide a link back to this post for the original recipe.

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