Recipes

Paella

Paella Recipe - Bruno Albouze - THE REAL DEAL

Paella Recipe

Paella is a worldwid known rice dish from Spain. It originated from Valencia on the eastern coast of Spain. Today paella is made in every region of Spain, using just about any kind of ingredient that goes well with rice. There are as many versions of paella as there are chefs. Two key elements here: the rice and the saffron. Paella rice is a short grain rice with exceptional absorption properties; 1 cup of rice to 3 cups of stock.

According to some purists, they claim that the traditional paella does not contain chorizo – Though, many paella recipes from Spain contain smoked paprika and pork. Well, Spanish chorizo is made with pork, smoked paprika and garlic… Without any doubt, chorizo in paella jazz up the dish.

Serves 8.
Meat & Seafood
3 ea. chicken legs, preferably small
12 ea. 16/20 size shrimp
8 ea. calamari squid
12 ea. mussels
12 ea. littleneck clams.

Paella Stock (make a day ahead).
7 ounces (200g) chicken backs
7 ounces (200g) chicken feet
7 ounces (200g) chicken necks
Bones from chichen thighs and knuckles from drumsticks
Shrimp shells.

1 ea. leek (white part only) / 1 ea. carrot / 1 ea. celery stalk
3 ea. garlic cloves, skin on and crushed
3 sprigs fresh thyme
3 parsley stems
1 ea. onion piqué with bay leaf (nail in leaf on the onion using 2 cloves)
1 tsp ≈ 12 ea. black peppercorns
3 cups (750ml) chardonnay or sauvignon blanc white wine
2 qts (2L) water.

Meat & Seafood Prep
Thaw shrimp overnight in the refrigerator if frozen or defrost them under running water. Peel off thawed shrimp starting with the head end pulling off the outer shell. For decorative purpose, leave the last segment of the shell and the tail tip on. Cut along the outer edge of the shrimp’s back and remove the vein; discard. Save all shells for stock. Keep shrimp on ice and refrigerate until ready to use.
Meanwhile, separate each chicken leg from the drumstick. Rotate the joint so that it pops out, and then cut the thigh away from the drumstick by cutting straight down through the remaining cartilage. Cut off knuckles and reserve for the paella stock. Debone thighs if desired and reserve bones for the stock as well.
In one gallon of cold water, stir in 1/3 cup (60g) salt and 1/4 cup (30g) cornmeal. Immerse clams and mussels and let soak 50 minutes to purge sand. Remove from water. Remove beard from mussels and scrub clams; rince and keep refrigerated. Soak calamari and tentacles in cold water and clean. Pat dry and cut tubes into 1/4 inch rings; keep refrigerated until ready to use.

Paella Stock Method
In a large pot, put all ingredients together. Bring to a boil and simmer for 4 hours; skim off impurities as it cooks. Pass hot stock through cheesecloth. Discard solids. Let cool and refrigerate overnight; covered. Scrape out fat left on the surface of the stock. Measure what’s needed for the recipe and freeze leftover for later use or reduce stock to the quantity needed. An hour or more before cooking the paella, bring stock to boil and mix in saffron to infuse.

Paella
1 Tbsp (15ml) olive oil or more
1/2 ea. red, green, yellow and orange bell pepper
1 ea. yellow onion, chopped
8 ea. garlic cloves, minced
3.5 ounces (100g) Spanish chorizo, cut into small dice
3.5 ounces (100g) Spanish chorizo, cut into slices.

3 ea. piquillo pepper (jared), sliced (optional)
1/2 lemon confit, flesh removed, rinsed rind and cut into fine strips (optional)
8 ounces (250g) Arroz paella rice or Bomba or Arborio
3 cups (750g) paella stock
.04 ounce (0.7g) Spanish saffron threads
1/2 tsp (1g) turmeric (it enhances the color, optional)
Salt, ground black pepper, cayenne to taste.

Garnishing
Blanched greens such as English peas, haricot vert, broccolette…
In season, artichokes can definitely be added.
Lemon wedges (one per serving).
Fresh thyme sprigs.

Method
Wash, cut, remove membranes and seeds from all bell peppers. Cut into squares. Save half of the pepper for the recipe, save the other half for your next salad. Chop onion, mince garlic and cut out Spanish chorizo.

Cooking Paella
Using charcoal barbecue or gas – cook paella on medium high. Use a large carbon steel skillet or carbon steel paella pan.

Heat up pan, add olive oil and sprinkle some salt. Sear chichen in both sides (skin side down first) until golden brown; about 5 minutes per side. Remove meat and set aside. Right after, cook the diced chorizo with minced garlic for about 3 minutes or until fragrant; stiring every so often. Throw in chopped onions and bell peppers. Cook for 5 minutes and transfer mixture in a separate bowl.
Sautee calamari squids with a drizzle of olive oil for a few minutes and remove from the pan. Bring paella stock to a boil.

Bring bell pepper mixture back into the hot pan. Add rice (do not wash it), stir and pour in hot stock and add turmeric if desired. Season with salt, black ground pepper and cayenne to taste. Soak in the seared chicken with its juice, add chorizo slices and stop stiring, or it will activate starch turning your rice gloppy; this not a risotto!. Cover the dish with the lid and cook for 10 minutes. If cooking paella over a charcoal barbecue make sure that the smoke communicates with the food. Remove lid and arrange (without stiring), calamari and tentacles, piquillo, lemon confit, clams, shrimp, mussels. Cover with foil and cook for 7 minutes more. Remove the foil, add greens and let cook for a few minutes more or until the bottom begins to caramelize. Garnish with lemon wedges and serve immediately. Enjoy!.

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