‘Paella’, meaning ‘to fry in the pan’, is a Valencian dish hailing back to the Spanish region in the 19th century. It was traditionally a rural dish enjoyed by the farming community consisting of grain rice, meat, beans and spices. However, on the Mediterranean coast of Valencia, meat would be substituted with seafood.
Seafood paella would grow popular throughout Spain and pass its borders, being enjoyed across Europe and eventually becoming the most globally popular paella recipe.
What goes in Seafood Paella?
The beauty of making your own paella is there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to what to include – usually any meat or seafood that pairs with rice is considered to be a worthy addition.
What You Will Need
Skipper uses his trusty paella pan but a large skillet will also do.
- 6 shallots or 2 large onions chopped
- 3-4 tablespoons olive or rapeseed oil
- 4–6 chicken thighs cooked and deboned
- 3-4 chicken stock cubes
- 500g shell-on langoustine tails
- 150g squid rings
- 150g cooked mussels
- 1 mug frozen peas (optional)
- 100g chorizo
Skipper's Seafood Paella
Using a flat pan, add oil and heat to a medium high temperature.
Add garlic and chopped shallots until they start to soften for 4 – 5 minutes.
Add paella rice and small amounts of chicken stock. The rice will absorb liquid as it cooks. Stir occasionally as rice will stick to the pan.
(If it sticks to the pan, reduce heat and continue to stir.)
After 5 minutes, add turmeric, squid rings and shell-on langoustine tails then continue adding small amounts of stock.
Continue to stir and make sure the rice does not stick to the pan.
After 6 – 7 minutes, add chicken pieces along with chorizo, mussels and peas .
When rice is soft and ingredients piping hot let the rice dry out before serving.
Paella is all about mixing flavours, so don’t be afraid to put your own slant on it – these are just basic guidelines.
Most important of all, have fun and enjoy!