A few years ago I gave my mother-in-law a subscription to an eating around the world service. Each month she got a set of recipes and spices to try a new country’s dishes. It seemed like a great idea as a present for her, but she didn’t enjoy it, and I inherited boxes of spices and recipes which works out great for our Cooking Around the World. The first meal we tried was Spain, and we quite enjoyed an authentic Spanish Paella meal. There were some other dishes besides the Spanish Paella, but the Paella was our favorite.
(there are some affiliate links in here)
- 8 cups chicken broth (or seafood broth, which is what the recipe calls for)
- 1 pinch saffron
- 1/2 teaspoon parsley
- 2.5 cups rice
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 pound shrimp (or diced chicken), cook ahead of time
- 2 chorizo sausages
- 1/2 pound clams (I left this out, but it’s in the recipe)
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 cup frozen green peas (I left this out)
Sofrito ingredients (sub-recipe for our Spanish Paella recipe)
- 1/2 pound onions
- 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 5 cloves garlic
- 100 ml oil
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons paprika
How to make Spanish Paella
First, you have to make the sofrito.
How to make sofrito, before you can make Spanish Paella
- Chop up the onion and garlic. Then place all of that into the food processor and puree into a smooth paste.
- Heat the paste in your pan, cooking until the moisture evaporates.
- Now add in the oil, stirring all of that together.
- Then add in the tomatoes, salt, sugar, and paprika (the funny thing is in the ingredient list on the recipe card they use the Spanish name, but in the actual recipe they say add paprika). Lower heat to medium-low and cook stirring occasionally until a dark thick red paste forms.
This recipe actually makes four times the amount you need, so I froze the extra in freezer bags.
Now back to making our Spanish Paella recipe
- Prep work: slice the chorizo into thick slices (in reality, I’d just grill the chorizo); dice the bell pepper; in a pot boil the chicken broth and add the saffron, then keep the broth warm.
- Now this is an exact quote, “In a paella pan heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil”, I don’t have a paella pan, so I used my giant fry pan (looking at the Amazon links, they look the same); grill the chorizo and green bell pepper, then remove that and toast the rice for a couple of minutes.
- Add 1/2 cup of the sofrito you made earlier (side note, the Spice Madam box has like 4 recipes to make, and so while I was making this, we were also making an egg dish I’m not gonna tell you about because it was not a hit) and mix it into the rice and add in 6 cups of the broth. Lower heat and cook for 10-15 minutes without stirring.
- Add in the shrimp and chorizo “to make a nice pattern.” I actually just stirred that in poured in the remaining broth, put the lid on to let it “steam” for a few minutes. The recipe calls for letting it rest for 10 minutes, but we were all super hungry so we just started eating it right away.
As to how our Spanish Paella recipe turned out? Jeff and I quite liked it. I saved the sofrito for adding to other recipes, which is a great idea. Princess, who doesn’t like rice or sausage, not too surprising really disliked the dish.