Pleasure On A Plate
With its hearty flavours, the Spanish rice favourite is a wonderful dish to enjoy with friends and family
PAELLA Prep & Cook 1 hour / Serves 6
Large pinch saffron threads ¼ cup boiling water 600 g uncooked medium prawns 1 kg black mussels 1 tbsp olive oil 600 g chicken thigh fillets, chopped coarsely 300 g chorizo sausages, sliced thinly 1 large red onion, chopped finely 1 large red capsicum, chopped finely 3 cloves garlic, chopped 2 tsps smoked paprika 2 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, chopped finely 1½ cups calasparra rice or Arborio rice 3 cups chicken stock ½ cup frozen peas 2 tbsps chopped flat-leaf parsley Lemon wedges and alioli (see Chef’s Tips), to serve
1. Place saffron and boiling water in a small bowl. Stand for 15 mins.
2. Meanwhile, shell and devein the prawns, leaving the tails intact. Scrub the mussels and remove the beards.
3. Heat oil in a 38 cm (top measurement) paella pan or very large frying pan. Add chicken; cook until browned. Remove from pan. Add chorizo to same pan (see Step 3); cook until browned on both sides. Remove from pan.
4. Add onion, capsicum, garlic and paprika to same pan; cook, stirring, until soft. Stir in tomatoes. Add the rice (see Step 4) and stir to coat in mixture.
5. Return the chicken and chorizo to the pan with the stock and saffron mixture (see Step 5); stir only until combined. Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Do not stir again. Bring to boil, then simmer, uncovered, for about 15 to 18 mins, or until the rice is almost tender.
6. Sprinkle peas over the rice. Place prawns and mussels evenly over the surface of paella (see Step 6). Cover the pan with large sheets of foil and simmer, covered, for 5 mins, or until the prawns are just cooked through and the mussels have opened (cooking time depends on the eveness of the heat under the pan. It can be useful to rotate the pan during cooking so the heat distributes evenly). Sprinkle with parsley. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and alioli (see Chef’s Tips).