Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
May 13, 2011 07:20 AM

A Good Soccorat

I have a paella pan and am have used it many times. Any tricks to get a better soccorat? (crispy layer of rice on the bottom of pan). Mine always comes out burnt to all hell on the bottom.

Rest of it comes out good.....

Also any other unique tricks that you do to yours?

I cook the rice in a stock that i make Right before i prepare the dish. Just boil bones from chicken, heads and shells from shrimps, bay leaf, black pepper corns.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Variables that could affect the formation of the crust:
    - burner, how high and how uniform
    - time
    - thickness of the rice layer (which depends on the pan area and amount of rice)
    - amount of liquid

    1. I find a longer time over lower heat makes a better crust and that a lot of the burn comes from the height of the boiling process when presumably the pan absorbs and retains too much heat from too high a flame.

      I like to bring the rice to a gently rolling medium boil (i.e., not so hot that it's practically percolating) over a slightly higher than medium heat and as soon as it's been at that level of boil for 10 to 20 seconds, I turn the heat down to just a pinch higher than low. And then I keep the rice on that low heat a few more minutes after it's been cooked through. That's when that toasty crust forms.

      And I'm with you on the stock. Makes the rice so much more flavorful. :)

      7 Replies
      1. re: inaplasticcup

        Thats a great idea. I can understand the need to turn it down a bit after starting to boil. My pan covers four burners on my stove so I guess I should use them all.

        1. re: giorgionadi

          You need to switch to a fire of grapevine trimmings to get more even heat. :)

          1. re: paulj

            and i also need to be living in the basque country ....but instead Im in NJ.

          2. re: giorgionadi

            4 burners??? That's a bigass paella pan. :) Mine's a 2 burner jobby.

            I almost forgot, but a little oil and/or butter in the cooking liquid helps crisp the rice too!

            1. re: inaplasticcup

              Good the way...hate icy bits in cold beer, completely adulterates the characteristics of a beer. Also, love rabo encendido...I work in the bronx and its like staple in the dominican kitchens.

              1. re: giorgionadi

                That oxtail is so very tasty, no?

                And I don't like icy bits in, say, a stout or an IPA, but in a light, crisp lager with some chicharrones or some super spicy Thai??? Deeeeelightful!!!

                1. re: inaplasticcup

                  I see where you are going with this....true genius...there is a time and place for everything.