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Paella beginner - which recipe?

  • r

I’ve never made paella, but have watched a few of these below.

Have you made any of these recipes? If so, can you recommend any to try out, or disregard. Both positive and negative welcome.

Steven Raichlen – Vegetarians at the Grill - Paella

Chiarello – Paella Italiana & Paella Party

Daisy Cooks – Paella

Everyday Food (Giada) – Easy Paella

Made in Spain – Paella Day

Alton Brown – It’s Paella

Bobby Flay – Paella and Sausage

Bittman and Andre – both cook their own version

Bittman and Mario – both cook

Guys Big Bite – Chicken and seafood Paella

Take Home Chef – Seafood Paella

Florence Tyler – Paella

Tyler – food 911 – Exotic Paella

Tyler – Ultimate Paella

Throwdown with Bobby Flay – Paella

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  1. Well, it's really all about personal taste, isn't it? Whichever of those recipes look good and doable to you, you should try.

    Based on my personal experience, I would tend to avoid anything by or from Tyler Florence or Guy Fieri, and steer towards Mario, Bobby, Chiarello, maybe Alton or Daisy. When you say Bittman and Andre, if you mean Jose Andres, I'd certainly give that one a try.

    You don't provide links so it'd take quite a bit of time to try to Google each of those to evaluate, so those are just my guesses.

    10 Replies
    1. re: acgold7

      Acgold, I asked:

      "Have you made any of these recipes? If so, can you recommend any to try out, or disregard."

      No, I didn't provide links because I was just wondering if anyone had made any of these recipes; they should know if they did and were happy or unhappy with them.

      Yes, any number of these look doable. Just wondering if any one had tried any of them - they were all - I'm guessing of course - on foodnetwork, so it is possible that someone here might have tried one of them.

      I notice that Chiarello say: Italian paella.

      Yes, I appreciate your guesses and input. Many thanks, always. I like your posts.

      1. re: Rella

        Sorry, I wasn't criticizing and I actually was clear on your question. It's unlikely anyone has tried all of these recipes so they can't really compare them, although I'm sure some people may have tried one or two they like.

        Like many, I don't usually follow a specific recipe. Paella is more of a technique so I will generally read a bunch of recipes so I can become familiar with the theory, then customize to my preferences.

        Whichever you choose, it is a spectacular dish. American versions usually combine chicken, some form of sausage and some form of seafood, but we had a couple of Spanish exchange students and they said they usually don't do that back home. We didn't see much of that when we were in Spain last summer and we went Paella-crazy. But you should pick whatever ingredients you like.

        My recommendations were only based upon the credibility of the chefs as I know them, not any specific recipe. Frankly, as long as you stay far away from anything with Tyler or Fieri in the title, I think you can't go wrong.

        Good luck!

        1. re: acgold7

          Yes, it is the technique that I'm afraid of - there are so many advise-ments.
          It's scary unless one just digs in. I've done that before - dug in - and then dug out because it's just so foreign to me when someone says/writes, oh, it's the crust that's the "bees knees." etc. etc. This time I'm armed with a Raichlen ss paella pan; and if that fails, I have a pan that I believe will maybe be an alternative, a Le Creuset paella-type pan.

          It's probably going to be first a chicken and seafood paella. DH likes mussels/clams (I dislike them), so we will accommodate mussels/clams. I think sausage might be a little too heavy; but maybe use an good chicken breast. We both are not too fond of chicken thighs (even in Moroccan cuisine.)

          Yes, I want to make paella without trepidation, just do one on my own. I'll have to just do it.

          Old Unc: I have a few Penelope's recipes. thanks.

          1. re: Rella

            Don't worry about the crust. Don't worry about the equipment. Don't worry about the recipe. Splatgirl and Paul are right on. It's just technique. I would really advise against chicken breast unless you really enjoy dry chicken. They recommend dark meat for a reason but I guess if you don't like it you shouldn't use it.

            It's really just a simple chicken (or whatever) and rice dish. Nothing to be intimidated about. And you can even do it in the oven, no matter what they tell you. (Even in Spain we had more than one where the seafood on top was still kind of raw.) You could use a Teflon skillet, for that matter. I've also had them served to me in small covered cast iron pots, and when you lift the lid and see those little clams singing at you on that yellow rice and the scent comes wafting at you, you just want to pass out.

            I would also recommend the PBS Spain TV show that Splatgirl recommends below -- I think it is in fact the Bittman and Mario show you reference above.

            1. re: acgold7

              Yes, it is Bittman, Mario, both tolerable, plus the amazingly gorgeous Spanish actress Claudia Basoles, and the borderline intolerable Gwenyth Paltrow. Despite GP, it's still an absolutely fantastic series if you are interested in Spanish food. I swear you can almost smell the lavender and paprika scented Spanish air when you watch. Plus Claudia makes me want to make out with the TV, and I'm not even into chicks.

              Another thing I remember learning from that episode is to grind up the saffron threads with the salt in a mortar and pestle and to add way more Pimenton than you would think wise.

              Anyway, yes, all about technique. Don't get too hung up on the recipe or trying to add too many ingredients. Or choose the simplest of the recipes you listed. A meat or fish plus chorizo and a little bit of veg for color. I like fresh green beans and occasionally red pepper strips.

              1. re: splatgirl

                Thanks everyone for the encouragement.
                Have spanish rice (two or three kinds), saffron, have pimenton, have paprika, have seafood, have chicken and sausage, red peppers, everything.

                I can do it! (in a few days)
                But I'm a-scared.

                1. re: Rella

                  I was just reading in a book called La Paella (from the library) that while paella has a special place in Spanish cooking, a moister rice dish more common at home. It may even have many of the same ingredients, but is cooked in a deeper dish (even a earthenware caszuela). They even like a soupy 'caldoso' rice. The author also claims that paella is viewed as lunch dish, not dinner, most suitable to a weekend gathering of extended family and friends.
                  http://www.amazon.com/Paella-Deliciou...

                  1. re: paulj

                    Most likely because lunch is the large main dish of the day in Spain. Dinner typically would be small, a sandwich, or an omelet perhaps.

                  2. re: Rella

                    Nothing to be scared of. Even if it doesn't come out the way you think it's "supposed" to, it will still be delicious.

        2. re: acgold7

          I am a crazy paella fan--I have the specialized burner and stand and a couple of pans including one that is big enough for three people to go sledding on together. The thing that I've found is most recipes WAY over complicate what is really a simple, 20 minute dish. I have not tried any of the recipes you listed specifically, but I can tell you what I've learned over the years...

          Skip trying to cook chicken or rabbit in the pan. Even my actual Spanish chef friend says this. If you want these ingredients in your finished dish, precook them in whatever way you find easiest and add them toward the end of cooking. Shrimp or other seafood is my default because it is fast and easy. I also like slices of spicy chorizo and feel this is the defining ingredient in addition to smoked pimenton ans saffron.
          When I really started getting an outstanding finished product was happy with was after I saw the paella episode of the PBS show "Spain, On The Road Again". There is no actual recipe given, but if you watch carefully you'll glean some important technique points. Mostly for me it was to use more oil. and to cook/toast the rice in the sofrito/oil before adding the stock--(I used to add the stock and then the rice). Probably 3x oil vs. what I would have used before. For me the result is AT LAST, the nice toasty bottom and no more gummy rice, ever.
          It's also important not to try to use too much rice. If you haven't already acquired one, get a bigger pan than you think you'll need for this reason. You want to end up with about a 3/4"-1" layer over the whole pan once it's cooked. I think I chronically tried to use too much before. Likewise the amount of liquid--it will take you a couple of runs to get your liquid to rice ratio dialed, and once you do, never forget it. I have mine on a post-it stuck to each of my pans.

        3. Try to dig up some of Penelope Casas' recipes.

          1 Reply
          1. re: oldunc

            Totally agree. I've made many of the dishes in her Paella book, and she knows the dish in all its variations.

            The one criticism I have of Penelope is that sometimes the meat components (pork or chicken) can be really dry. I know from other braising dishes that her recipes tend to fall in the dry/tough zone. So you might want to try and cook the meat components a bit less, or a lot longer.

          2. I've seen a number of those, and cooked paella like dishes long before that. Seems to me that paella is more a matter of technique than recipe. That, and practice.

            Why don't you just go into the kitchen, and make a dish inspired by what you have already seen, and using what ever you have on hand? Don't wait till you find the best recipe!

            2 Replies
            1. re: paulj

              OK, I took the leap today into the kitchen. Not totally inspired by the ATK/CI recipe, but since I am a fan of 10 seasons of shows, I knew that I could turn out something based on their exact instructions.
              http://theculinarychronicles.com/2010...

              Some of my ingredients were the same, some not.
              Red Bell Peppers from my garden.
              It called for an ONION!, I used a red onion :-)
              )It called for can of diced tomatoes; I used strained organic.
              It called for dry white wine - I did not use any today (private reason)
              I used organic chicken, had no sausages.
              I thawed: shrimp, calamari, scallops, mussels from a bag of "supreme seafood."
              I used my own homemade organic chicken stock.
              I used Spanish Saffron threads
              I used Bay Leaf and
              I used 2 cups Calasparra Rice
              and
              the large pot as in the recipe, even though I bought a paella pan for my first time use. (Call me scaredy-cat.)

              Problem(s):
              I used probably 1/2 cup more chicken broth than called for. The rice was a little too moist, but not quite as moist as a dry risotto. The recipe calls for cooking with the lid on - means more moisture.
              The option in the recipe for the soccarat was to set the Dutch oven uncovered over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, rotating the pot 180 degrees after 2 minutes for even browning.
              After all this, I certainly didn't want to risk burning my pot, nor the rice, just to try this out; so I didn't.

              I think a sausage (ran out of sausages, usually I have many pounds of them, not one in the freezer!) would have helped the flavor.
              I don't think I'd like a chorizo. I dislike the Mexican chorizos (cured - and not cured). I hardly ever eat pork, but I think I'd like it in this particular ingredient-ed recipe.

              The recipe didn't call for smoked or regular paprika. I added 1 tsp. smoked paprika.

               
              1. re: Rella

                Spanish chorizo is quite different from Mexican, especially the 'fresh' stuff from a grocery. Cured Spanish chorizo is much more like Italian salami, though with a distinctive paprika color (but not necessarily heat).

            2. CreateTV (PBS) is having a Paella marathon today.

              1 Reply
              1. re: paulj

                Thanks Paulj. Everyone will be happy. But I don't have TV anymore. I'll look to see their line-up and see what I'm missing.

              2. Rella - none of the assorted celebrity cooks you've listed will give you a recipe for an authentic paella. I suggest you ignore them all.

                Here's a faithful recipe from someone who understands paella and how to approximate it with ingredients available in the USA. An authentic paella will seem deceptively simple yet there are infinite variations within the limited ingredients.

                http://www.csl.cornell.edu/~martinez/...

                As someone from Valencia I don't mind admitting that I've never had a great seafood paella and will avoid anything with that name. For a great seafood paella we have something very special called "Arroz a banda" instead - "Paella" is reserved more for the kind of rice dish Prof José Martínez describes in the link I recommend. We don't consider paella mixta (surf and turf) to be anything other than a dish made for indiscriminating tourists - both foreign and Spanish - and authentic paella never has sausage in it. What you might find added to a chicken and rabbit (or just chicken) paella is pancetta or other kinds of pig fat products. This is common in the North of Valencia (Castellon) and my Spanish mother includes it when making paella in England as she says the pig fat changes the density of the water.

                Remember that Paella is a regional speciality so just because someone comes from Spain doesn't mean that they know how to cook (or even recognise) an authentic paella.

                Me, I'm from Alicante in the Valencia region and it makes my soul ache to see so many dreadful aberrations on a dish so close to my heart and cultural identity (as a rule of thumb, ignore any recipe for paella that has onion in it - my guess that this includes recipes from all the chefs you've listed).

                16 Replies
                1. re: MoGa

                  Arroz a banda - that's the one where the rice is cooked in a rich fish stock, but the fish itself is served separately, right?

                  I also like the rice dish that has an 'egg crust'. I'm not sure whether that's called a paella or not.

                  1. re: MoGa

                    Your link isn't working for me. Is this the correct link?

                    http://www.csl.cornell.edu/~martinez/...

                    If so, it may be *authentic*, but it doesn't look very interesting to me. Green beans, limas, and rosemary? Don't care if it's truly Valencian or not, but I want my paella with mussels and chorizo. If it's good enough for Marcella, it's good enough for me. Authenticity be damned.

                    1. re: JoanN

                      That's right JoanN - thanks for fixing that link for me!

                      paulj - I've heard of people serving the fish and squid pieces separately but it's more common to see them placed back on the rice before serving. It's also common to eat this with alioli.
                      We only call a tiny percentage of the huge range of rice dishes "paella" (I don't understand why people get so fixated on describing everything made with rice as paella -this term is applied to very few dishes within the Valencia region.)
                      Here's a link to an Alicante based blogger's entries for the egg crust rice dish you described (Arroz con costra)
                      http://blogs.mis-recetas.org/pepa/?s=...

                      A link to Arroz a banda how I know and love it:
                      http://blogs.mis-recetas.org/pepa/201...

                      You can see many more regional rice dishes here:
                      http://blogs.mis-recetas.org/pepa/cat...
                      You'll notice that none of them are actually called "paella"

                      1. re: MoGa

                        Darn! I knew I should've learned Spanish.:-))

                        1. re: MoGa

                          There's something a mystique to paella outside of Spain. Maybe it's the large diameter pan, and (over)abundance of seafood on top; in effect the show qualities. The finer points of the rice and its preparation don't come across in pictures and videos.

                          1. re: paulj

                            Last year the town of Sueca celebrated their 50th Annual International Paella Competition (one of the oldest gastronomic competitions in Spain).
                            Coincidentally that year, a British TV chef was able to synch his tour of the country with the competition. You can see this part of the program here:
                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WyV1Y...
                            This is about as authentic as you can get in an English language program

                      2. re: MoGa

                        Ah, ha! I found the Jose Martinex recipe at

                        http://www.csl.cornell.edu/~martinez/...

                        which is the same as the show I mentioned below at the L'Alter hotel.

                        1. re: Rella

                          That's right, but I wouldn't call it exactly the same. As I mentioned, there are rather tight boundaries around acceptable ingredients for an "Authentic" paella, you could eat paella made with these ingredients every week made by different people for years and you'd have something noticeably different every time.

                          My family are from Alicante itself and you can't get closer to the sea than that, and for generations they've had easy access to fish and shellfish from the boats. However, I've never known any of them to make a seafood paella, so I don't agree with Mr Bittman's opinion:
                          "The combination of ingredients, he insists (he's joined by others), is the correct one, and I'm sure that's true for Picassent. But in those parts of the Valencia region closer to the Mediterranean, seafood is obviously a more sensible addition than rabbit."
                          I read an obituary on Joan Batiste Pascual, the fisherman (or rather cook on a fishing boat) from Gandia who is attributed with creating "fideua" (often described as paella made with pasta noodles) and he confirmed that the fish rice dish that the original fideua was based on was "arroz a banda" not paella.
                          I personally can't take Bittman seriously having seen his awful tomato "paella"
                          http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/05/din...
                          (oh the horror!)

                          1. re: MoGa

                            I just watched a few minutes of the Batali/Bittman/Paltrow Zen master making paella while they watch Mr. Zen first adding to the pan in this order, olive oil, shrimp, ONIONS, - then I turned it off -- remembering the "onion" admonition.

                            I agree the tomato paella is laughable. Bittman does his own thing; and what I've decided is that he takes a recipe that is stable and well-founded and then for whatever reason, he messes with it. Why? I have no idea!

                            1. re: MoGa

                              " As I mentioned, there are rather tight boundaries around acceptable ingredients for an "Authentic" paella, you could eat paella made with these ingredients every week made by different people for years and you'd have something noticeably different every time."

                              In that respect, I feel the same about wine.

                              1. re: Rella

                                "In that respect, I feel the same about wine."
                                Oh, I'm so glad you understand!

                                However, I do hope I haven't put you off experimenting.
                                I make a lot of Spanish style rice dishes and do use onion - I just don't call these paellas. My take on this is that it is perfectly acceptable to go off on your own tangents and cook other people's interpretations of paella, but I belleve you'll get the most out of this culinary tradition if you understand and can recognise an authentic paella first.
                                With a good solid foundation and a grasp of the basic principles of the dish you're more likely to be a success with creating and replicating what I hope will be many, many wonderful "Arroz" dishes during your life time.

                                Hopefully you'll get to try making a standard chicken paella. Once you get the hang of it you can try making it with onion and see for yourself how the texture of the rice changes. With practice, you can get a golden soccarat crust even on a home kitchen range - that crust is never entirely successful when onions have been added, it gives too much 'moisture' to the texture of the dish. Each grain of rice in an ideal paella should be dry and crusty yet moist and succulent at the same time. Onions would ruin this balance.
                                Here's another English language description of an ideal example of a paella where the contradiction is realised to perfection
                                http://online.wsj.com/article/SB12182...

                                1. re: MoGa

                                  I like the article. Thanks so much.
                                  No, you haven't put me off at all. I'm really interested in making paella and am timid about learning, so everything you have offered is appreciated.

                                  1. re: Rella

                                    Here's an English video of a paella very similar to the one by José Martínez -
                                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GC0Fgo...
                                    And in Spanish here
                                    http://www.arrozsos.com/recetas/ver/p...
                                    Let me know if you need any help with translation

                                    Incidentally, Joel Robuchon made it known some time ago that the Paco Gandia restaurant in Pinoso is one of his favourites - one of the reasons this place has got so much English language attention. In an article here http://online.wsj.com/article/SB12379... he is quoted as saying ""When one eats this paella, he is in gourmet paradise.""
                                    He's obviously still into this dish as he recently posted pictures of his latest visit there
                                    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?se...
                                    I'm going back to Alicante next Friday and will be eating at Nou Manolin - it really is excellent and my grandfather used to supply melons to the owner's own father who had the kiosko and then bar Manolin in the Plaza de Espana.

                                    1. re: MoGa

                                      I'm so glad you came to this chowhound query. Instead of it seemig like a 'small world' as many say; it seems we are part of a very large world; a world of cuisine, wine, art, to make up the beautiful parts of life. Heritage is such a part of that, and I enjoy the grandfather-melon story, and your snail-picking past :-))

                                      Yes, I see that Robuchon was sincerely impressed.

                                  2. re: MoGa

                                    I was puzzled about the strength of some 'no-onion' specifications, but your explanation (also in Koeler's book) adds some credence to it. Other moist items are included such as peppers. But onions could be different if they tend to breakdown at about the same as the rice is done, contributing extra moisture at a critical point in the cooking. I'm not sure about that timing thing, but my gut feeling from cooking lots of onions suggests that possibility.

                                    Is it ok to use onions in stock?

                                    1. re: paulj

                                      To be honest, I don't see why not. However, none of the great paellas I've ever eaten (at least those that were cooked in front of me at family gatherings in the coutryside/fields) were made using stock. Perhaps that's the great secret to using snails even though they are used less and less nowadays, especially now that caldos and fumets are easily available to Spaniards in tetrabrik packs.

                                      One of the tasks I had a child was to collect snails from the rosemary and thyme bushes that covered the countryside. These snails were never eaten on the day but went through a long purging process (I remember seeing them hanging in nets on the shaded walls of an aunt's backyard, she was the family member the others would go to for snails). The washing of the snails was a long and laborious process involving lots and lots of rinsing and foam and slime. But they bring a lot of flavour to the paella cooking liquid, there's the flavour of the herbs they spent their lifetime eating and their meat also adds a certain something (and my own personal suspicion is that there will be enough remnants of the slime there to change the density of the water - what my mother does with pancetta and which another poster here might be achieving with the addition of pimenton infused chorizo - hopefully the cooking kind!)

                                      Bell peppers s another story. I'm actually not the paella purist some here may think me to be as I accept the Alicantinian variation on paella which includes chickpeas/garbanzos, red peppers and whole garlic cloves as being an acceptable variant of "authentic paella".
                                      With bell peppers they are cut into pieces and fried right at the beginning which adds a lot of flavour to the olive oil. The bell peppers once cooked are fished out and then added again - often ornamentally - once all the other ingredients have been added. As the bell peppers lay on top of the rice they do little to change the texture of the dish, also the cooking liquid won't make them too mushy.
                                      Garlic invokes a lot of passionate controversy amongst paella aficionados, I just don't consider it the no-no that others do, but it needs to be added with good judgement as the taste never ever dominates a genuine paella.
                                      Here's a photo of my own showing the moment a sofrito (which I strongly suspect contains garlic) is added to a Valencian paella
                                      http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ezeby_TDKyk...

                                      Incidentally, black pepper (which is included in the recipe following the report on the Pinoso paella) is another forbidden ingredient for paella, one that invokes little controversy amongst us 'locals'. There may have been a translation error as black pepper is called 'pimienta' but paprika is called 'pimenton' and bell peppers are called pimientos.

                          2. Haven't tried them all but the Batali/Bittman piece in Spain, actually cooked by an older Valencian man (they dubbed the "paella whiperer" is far and away the best AND easiest ever. Check it out on the Spain series available from Netflix, they did with Gweneth Paltrow or the book from the same trip.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: memphisman

                              I know that everyone recommends the Batali/Paltrow/Bittman series and I have that; I'll have to look at it again.

                              But I do have another episode - or even two - of another series that is not a part of that series, in which Bittman and Mario cook paella. I also have the one that Jose Andreas and Bittman each cook their own version. They are quite the pair.

                            2. Rella--

                              You've been given huge amounts of conflicting advice, so the most important thing to remember is this -- don't be intimidated into not trying this dish. Pick ingredients you like and don't be put off by the authenticity police. There are several discussions underway elsewhere about what constitutes authenticity and it would be a shame if you never got around to making this dish because you were afraid of screwing it up because someone doesn't approve of something you did.

                              Good Lord, look at the fistfights people get into around here about what constitutes what makes real BBQ or Fried Chicken or tacos or anything else. If you want to put Sausage or Seafood or, for heaven's sake, onions in your Paella, go ahead. Here's the secret: use any proteins you like. Use any rice you like. Use any stock you like. It'll be fine. Just follow the procedure: Brown Proteins; Brown Veg; Saute Rice; Add Stock; Add Seafood (optional) ; Eat with friends. I promise you, no one will come knocking on your door and arrest you.

                              I watched all the variations of Paella today on Create after Paul's heads up on that; I'm watching a Norwegian one (!) now. And you know what? They all look delicious.

                              You go, girlfriend.

                              1. I think that paella is similar to another great Spanish export, sangría, in that it's not nearly as much about the specific recipe as it is the technique. Once you have a basic one down, you can start giving it your own touches. If you ask me, it should be made outside on the grill in a traditional paella pan, and that's about as far as I get for staying traditional. Stay loose, relax, it's probably going to come out pretty delicious no matter what you do.The one that I started with is from The Spanish Table, a store in Santa Fe that sells all manner of Spanish ingredients and cookware.

                                http://www.spanishtable.com/mm5/merch...

                                PS: It just so happens Eric Ripert is on TV making paella at this very moment.. Don't use his recipe. I'm yelling at the TV left and right.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                                  Thanks for the link/url. I liked the article, and especially the smoker box, as that will probably be at some point a joint venture with spouse.

                                  Love Santa Fe, but it is too 'high' for me.

                                  1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                                    Urk! I've just seen his recipe also. Sprinkle with sliced scallions?!?!???
                                    http://blog.aveceric.com/2010/08/16/e...

                                    Hands down the absolute worst recipe I've ever seen is the one here:
                                    http://www.howtodothings.com/food-and...
                                    This gem literally has my mother bent over screaming with laughter whenever she sees it. It is extraordinarily funny, especially when you take into account the po-faced introduction (which begins by earnestly explaining that a paella pan is a "circular, semi-cylindrical container with one or two hoop-shaped handles" - can you IMAGINE using a circular paella pan with just one hoop shaped handle?? - and continues by getting more and more ridiculous)

                                    1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                                      +1 on the notion it's technique, method. Put in whatever you want.

                                      That being said, we've struggled with rice/stock ratios, complicated by the heat source (fire/stove) and the rice. Endlessly frustrating. But always delicious.

                                    2. I have made Paella a few several times and I must agree it's more the a style of cooking. I personally like mine with Cherizo, sea food, roaast red pepper and chicken. Rice dishes with Mixed ingrediants are tough to cook. So that the rice does not get overcooked, I take it off the heat and let it sit covered for about 10 minutes an it seems to turn out perfect.

                                      I have been practicing my Paella making by cooking arroz con pollo same technique... tough to get right but a great way to make chicken and practice the Paella too..

                                      Daisy Marteniz is the best (though everyone has a diff. recipe for this too).

                                      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/da...

                                      5 Replies
                                      1. re: sparky403

                                        It's interesting that, while Hispanics in Latin America, have the Spanish love of rice, and rice cooked with meats like chicken, the Valencian ideal of a dry short-medium grain rice dish does not seem to have taken hold. A light and fluffy long grain 'pilaf' seems to be the ideal through out much of Latin America. They might even call it a paella if loaded with seafood. Moros y Christianos is often described as a Cuban style rice dish that is popular in Spain (white rice with black beans).

                                        Spain does grow a lot of long grain (Indica type), but most of it is for export (to northern Europe).

                                        I believe Anadalusia had the strongest ties with Latin America, especially after the initial colonization by adventurers from Castilla and Extremadura. But I haven't found any indication as to whether that has anything to do with culinary preferences. There may also be an African component to the long grain preference. In the US Carolinas in particular, both the growing technology and rice strain are attributed to the African slaves.

                                        1. re: sparky403

                                          I'm paraphrasing, but I believe Daisy in that episode said that she had had paella in Barcelona, but she likes her own better.

                                          1. re: Rella

                                            In her book Daisy Cooks she writes "But nobody ever accused me of being traditional", but in Puerto Rican tradition she uses achiote for color (instead of safron), and long grain rice (and PR sofrito). :)

                                            1. re: paulj

                                              Yes, I caught that, too. What can one say? :-))

                                            2. re: Rella

                                              Seriously, Barcelona really isn't the place to hunt out paella. This city has SO much good food and so many wonderful culinary traditions - such as the spectacular Sarsuela de peix (AKA Zarzuela) but paella isn't one of them. It's like going to London and expecting a great Lancashire Hotpot or Scottish Haggis.
                                              Even within the city of Valencia there are only a few restaurants that will serve you good paella. It's a dish that needs lots of room to cook it in, so the best paellas are usually in suburban areas or villages or little satellite towns like Sueca which is perhaps the place most famous for this traditional dish. At lunch time in Sueca you'll find coach loads of Spaniards who've travelled there specially, from all different kinds of places in Spain and not all of them far away, in order to eat paella. The smell of burning orangewood fills the air and all the tables are filled with groups who made their orders in advance.

                                          2. Ingrid Hoffman has my favorite recipe, thought if I recall correctly I think I only used half the amount of chicken stock as the recipe says (just look at your bag of rice and see what the liquid to rice ratio is).

                                            http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/2261012...

                                            13 Replies
                                            1. re: Rick

                                              Ingrid represents that Latin American take on paella, as opposed to a strictly Spanish one. She grew up in Columbia, and has spent her professional career in Miami (both in restaurants and Spanish language TV). It does look like an easy recipe to make.

                                              1. re: Rick

                                                Don't you remove the bell peppers before adding the water and rice? The idea of cooking everything together the way Ingrid's recipe directs so that the peppers get all mushy and waterlogged rather than having them keep their glorious fried identity (we generally lay them on the rice once some of the water/stock as been absorbed) is really alien to me, and quite unappealing.

                                                1. re: MoGa

                                                  Outside of Spain there's a tendency to overload the dish with seafood, leaving no room to show off the peppers.

                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                    It's just the idea of stewed peppers rather than fried peppers that I find so extraordinary (and off-putting).

                                                    This thread has really raised my curiosity. There have been at least two posts now stipulating that what makes a paella a paella isn't so much what goes into it but the 'technique'.

                                                    I find this very puzzling as I don't understand what 'technique' is being referred to.

                                                    - What makes a paella a paella rather than a jambalaya, pilaf, etc...?

                                                    According to wikipedia a "creole jambalaya" is made in the following way:
                                                    "First, meat is added to the trinity of celery, peppers, and onions; the meat is usually chicken and sausage such as andouille or smoked sausage. Next vegetables and tomatoes are added to cook, followed by seafood. Rice and stock are added in equal proportions at the very end. The mixture is brought to a boil and left to simmer for 20 to 60 minutes, depending on the recipe, with infrequent stirring. Towards the end of the cooking process, stirring usually ceases. Some versions call for the jambalaya to be baked after the cooking of all the ingredients."
                                                    This pretty much sums up the techniques involved for most of the recipes linked to here, so what am I missing?

                                                    1. re: MoGa

                                                      I'm not quite sure about the term, 'technique' myself. Would it mean, the order and manner in which the ingredients are added,

                                                      If so, paella could easily be given an outline such as

                                                      1. Put oil in

                                                      2. Brown the chicken

                                                      3. and so on.

                                                      without being mysterious about the word, 'technique"?

                                                      1. re: MoGa

                                                        Some try to trace jambalaya's roots back to the time when Spain ruled New Orleans (jamon y ...).

                                                        A jambalaya is probably closer to an arroz melloso (moist) than a paella.
                                                        http://cajondesastres.wordpress.com/2...
                                                        They don't (usually) try to cook the rice in a thin layer that is dry and starting to crust at the point where the rice is 'a punto'. What about the 'infrequent stirring'? Jose Andres stresses that the paella rice is not to disturbed once it is evenly distributed in the pan. What about the choice of rice? Jambalaya rice is likely to be a long grain, may be even parboiled.

                                                        Anyways when I say technique, I have in mind cooking the rice in a thin layer, undisturbed (in contrast to a risotto), aiming for a dry perfectly cooked rice. The ideal of a crust on the bottom of the pan is characteristic of paella, though not unique (lots of cuisines value this).

                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                          So this "paella" recipe from Gordon Ramsay (this was shown on a TV program where he kept stressing its 'authenticity') can safely be discounted as being a genuine paella then?
                                                          http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life...
                                                          "Simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the rice from sticking, but take care not to overstir or it will release too much starch."

                                                          And then there's the goal of cooking the rice in a thin layer. Most of the recipes make no mention of this nor do they give any directions for achieving this ideal. So do they get discounted as paella recipes also?

                                                          1. re: MoGa

                                                            Here's an interesting comparison of Gordon Ramsay and Jamie Oliver recipes
                                                            http://www.plate-expectations.com/201...
                                                            Here's the telling comment: "Both recipes give quite a smooth, creamy result; you can tell these boys are fans of risotto."

                                                            Here's a video of Oliver helping with a large paella in Andalucia
                                                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_li_hb...

                                                            Here Andres says - stir the rice for 5 minutes, but after that 'don't touch it again'
                                                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpZMQ1...
                                                            He's also of the 'you can have any flavor you want' school of cooking paella.

                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                              I saw the Jamie in Andalucia program with my mother. You would have needed earplugs... if you'd understood her Spanish and Valencian curses. It was just like watching a village in lincolnshire making sausages and proclaiming it Haggis.

                                                              I've been astounded in the past with José Andres' popularity in the USA and looked into who he was. Seems he was a kid who lived near Roses, up in the very North of Catalonia who got a lucky break working at El Bulli before that restaurant strode into notoriety and worldwide fame. I won't take it away from him that Ferran Adrià would have been a dream master for his apprenticeship (because he didn't know that much about cooking before he landed his job there). One thing Andres wouldn't have picked up at El Bulli are the skills needed to make an authentic paella and he CERTAINLY wasn't making them where he was before, even he's admitted that he was working somewhere where they made paellas for tourists (that part of the Catalonian coast really does have no tradition with this dish) and after working at El Bulli he went to the USA and got his very lucky break there. As soon as a chef leaves Spain, no matter what region he/she is from, they are suddenly expected to become experts on this regional speciality, it would not be in his interest at all to exaplain that he isn't from the 'right region'. So from what I can tell, he's been peddling the tourist paellas he learned to cook as a teenager and that's the version half of North America seems to believe now is the definitive kind. It makes sense. Doesn't mean that this Valencian lady has to like it! :D

                                                              If Andres is a cooking guru for all things spanish then it makes sense that the reason for his credibility (Ferran Adria) would usurp him - better to learn from the apprentice's master after all.
                                                              Ferran has been quoted as saying "Alberto Herraiz is the best paella chef in the world."
                                                              And he has a book out on this very subject.
                                                              And it's been translated into English.
                                                              I'm not convinced about Mr Herraiz. He studied the art of making paellas for about 15 years and then became the chef at El Fogón in Paris. But I DO respect him. My take on his style of cooking is that he does fundementally understand what a paella is and the techniques involved in cooking them, and it's from this solid foundation that he works in replicating them and also deconstructing and meddling with them. Within the strict but limitless confines of the Spanish rice world he's essentially doing, to a degree, what Mr Adria was doing for decades at El Bulli. No wonder Ferran Adria appreciates him.
                                                              At the Fogon website Mr Herraiz describes his philosophy thus:
                                                              "Descended from four generations of chefs from Castilla la Mancha, Alberto Herráiz chose to come and work in France back in 1997. In this country, homeplace of the invention and codification of fine cooking, he opened his restaurant, the « Fogón Saint-Julien ». This is an ultra-specialized ‘arroceria’ where « bomba » rice reigns supreme, simmering in elegant paellas. A world away from tourist trade clichés, he starts his paella rice-olution, « the best-known and least understood dish of the Spanish culinary tradition! ».
                                                              This is a return to the fundamentals of the traditional « arroz en paella » (paella-cooked rice): cooked in a specific stock for each recipe with just a few different ingredients, creating a perfect balance of textures and identifiable, distinct flavours right from the very first grain of rice you taste. The exact opposite, in fact, of ‘mixed’ paella, which Alberto Herráiz views as a mere shadow of paella’s former self."
                                                              The last sentence is worth remembering - particularly as he himself has rice dishes in his book where he mixes chicken and fish (although the one I saw was titled "Rice made in a paella pan from Barcelona" - it did actually look very appetising. There was onion in this recipe also but the onion was used in the stock and reduced to a fine pulp in the crucial sofrito - so no bits to ruin the texture of the rice or get caught up and burned in the socarrat)
                                                              http://www.jenius.com.au/2011/07/cook...

                                                              1. re: MoGa

                                                                108 Paella Recipes from Phaidon? I'm not sure whether that reminds me more of their Indian book in a faux basmati rice bag, or 1080 Recipes. 1080 is the 'Spanish' cookbook I least use! I wasn't too impressed with their French equivalent either (I know how to cook), even though I like the blogger who translated it.

                                                                This reviewer writes: "Technically speaking, there is no 'authentic' paella recipe because paella is a method of cooking linked to the pan."
                                                                That's what I meant by saying paella is about technique, not recipes.

                                                                I'll have to keep an eye out for this book, though at $40 I'm not going to buy it new.

                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                  I looked at this Phaidon Paella book in the last two weeks at Costco - I believe it was $24.95 at Costco. That is not the reason I turned it down. Mainly the reason is that I believe Phaidon was so successful with their 1080 recipes book that they have taken a subject, such as Paella, and made it a separate book. There were several other subject-type Phaidon books at Costco all for $24.95 and they didn't look that great to me as far as a compilation of recipes on the same subject, certainly not worth the discounted price. I did wonder if they came out of the 1080 Phaidon books.

                                                                  Casas has a book named "Paella," too, which I have, as well as her other book, which I just bought, "The Foods and Wines of Spain."

                                                                  Since I've not known how to make Paella, Casas' book, "Paella" did not inspire me. Just leafing through Casas' Paella book, it seemed nothing more than 'variations,' although I don't know what else to expect.

                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                    "That's what I meant by saying paella is about technique, not recipes."
                                                                    Except that nobody here can seem to identify the key parts of this "technique" :D

                                                                    As for the book, that it comes from Phaidon seems irrelevant to me. Herraiz had previously published a book on that other controversial subject - Gazpacho. In so far as I understand the book was released in French as well as in Spanish. The French version was spectacularly successful and helped spawn a Europe wide craze for liquid gazpachos.
                                                                    Not surprising then that he's released this paella book.
                                                                    His restaurant specialises in gazpachos, rice and tapas - so you can expect a 122 tapas book in the coming years!

                                                                    Incidentally, although Ferran Adria has stated in the past that Herraiz is the best paella chef he'd encountered he's also been on record saying that the Paco Gandia restaurant in Pinoso had made the best paella he'd ever eaten. This makes way more sense to me.

                                                                    Anyway, I've ordered the Herraiz book for myself. Not that I agree totally with what he's had to say about paella and authenticity, but I do think I can learn something from his approach. After all, I do make a lot of rice dishes, often using paella pans. I just don't call these rice dishes paellas because I know that they aren't.

                                                  2. The Alton Brown version is absolutely amazing!!

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: Becca Porter

                                                      I just got through looking at the video. He is thorough. The recipe is below.
                                                      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/al...

                                                      I was surprised that Alton made with chicken and green beans which is the closest to the so-called 'real paella."

                                                      This is good in that he does do it on fire. I'm not sure - I'll have to go back and look again, since I skimmed through it -- why he said he was going to add a little water to the rice. Hmmm.

                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                        This doesn't look TOO bad. If you are going to attempt this I'd urge you to take the peppers off once thoroughly fried (use red only, the green ones are too weird even for me, they should brown and blacken slightly) and set them aside. Once the stock has been added to the rice lay the peppers directly onto the rice so that some of the falvour of the peppers goes back into the rice but so that it doesn't stew.
                                                        If you are to make this on a stove rather than in a smoky chimney, just add some smoked paprika along with the tomato (you don't want it to burn in the oil) to approximate that smoky flavour.
                                                        Also, I don't know anyone in Spain who colours their rice exclusively with saffron (something commented in the Rick Stein Link). Some saffron is usually used, the rest is colorant (we use something like tatrazine rather than turmeric. I've personally learned not to care about the colour, but then, as I've said, I don't make paellas.
                                                        I think the amount of saffron in the Alton Brown version is a bit excessive. Nevertheless....
                                                        All in all, one of the better celebrity cook recipes for this dish I've seen.
                                                        Good luck!

                                                        P.S. nearly missed it. The amount of rosemary seems wildly excessive also. It's usual in Valencia to add some rosemary twigs on the top of the rice during the last ten minutes or so, the rosemary is then removed and discarded. All that saffron and rosemary seems too medicinal to me.

                                                        1. re: MoGa

                                                          I don't know if anyone saw it, but I did make a paella yesterday and posted my remarks and finished photo.

                                                          I do agree re your remarks about the Alton Brown recipe re the green bell pepper - mainly because I've grown away from their taste. I did add smoked paprika yesterday, but rosemary in the paella, along with the saffron would be too medicinal for me. I have noticed that some paella rice photos when done do have a different color, as well as differences in dry to wet.

                                                          I have rosemary twigs abound to add.

                                                    2. To add even more information to the responses you've read, here is a great blog dedicated to Paella and it's variations.

                                                      http://paellaprofessor.blogspot.com/

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: soypower

                                                        You won't find much meaningful 'instruction' in this site.
                                                        As an initial example (there are so many more), no self respecting paella aficionado could ever use this photo to represent any kind of genuine paella
                                                        http://paellaprofessor.blogspot.com/2...
                                                        Seriously, just look at the rice used in it.

                                                      2. The debates about the true paella got me to wondering there were such a thing as a paella cookoff (like bbq and chili in the USA). Turns out there is, at least in Denia:

                                                        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJcuSK...

                                                        9 Replies
                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                          We have LOADS of paella cook offs. The one in Sueca (which I already posted a link to - it's the one where Rick Stein visits the region) celebrated its 51st competition this year. It's supposed to be the oldest 'cook off' in Europe.

                                                          - Rella. The book you linked to by Alberto Herraiz is the same one I ordered. Can't give you much of an opinion about it as I haven't seen it yet.
                                                          BTW, I did see your first cooking attempt but I'm afraid the recipe you used is so far outside anything I can recognise as a Spanish arroz dish or paella it just wouldn't be appropriate for me to comment on it. I'm awfully sorry.

                                                          1. re: MoGa

                                                            I'm going to look again if this is definitely the book I was referring to - it's at Costco. (I go once a week.) I think it is the book I was referring to in my previous post.

                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                              If it is, there was one reassuring (reassuring for me, anyway) quote that I found on page 8 where the author says:
                                                              "Strictly speaking, the name ‘paella’ only applies to the Valencian version. It is not correct to call other versions of the dish ‘paella’; instead they are known as arroz en paella, which literally mans ‘rice cooked in a paella pan’. In this book I have used the term ‘paella rice’."

                                                              1. re: MoGa

                                                                Thanks. I printed it out to take with me when I look at the book. I hope it is still there.

                                                                Costco has dwindled its books to 2 stacks, at most 3, when it used to have maybe 10 to 12 stacks of cookbooks on a table. So disappointing to me.

                                                                1. re: MoGa

                                                                  I bought the book yesterday. Certainly it has the most imaginative paella rice recipes to last a while for making/learning/experimenting with for a few years.

                                                                  On the outside of the book on the cloth rapper, it states, "Everything you need to know to cook authentic paella at home, from the most basic recipes to lesser-known variations."

                                                                  There are 4 pages dedicated to Valencia Paella.

                                                                  I note that his book is called "Paella" and not "Paella Rice" as "Paella Rice" is the term he uses for I'd say ALL of his recipes; i.e., "PAELLA RICE with spider crab and peas." (My capitalization).

                                                                  I'm glad you recommended it, and I'm glad I bought it. I have really appreciated your input to this thread and to my query.

                                                                  An aside: On the cellophane wrapper, it has a sticker which says: "Best Publisher in the World" "Gourmand World Cookbook Awards."

                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                    I finally bought some real Spanish rice. The bulk section of an upscale grocery that I occasional browse had Matiz Valenciano rice for $2.60/lb.
                                                                    http://www.matizespana.com/products/5...

                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                      That is a good price. I'll look for that. Unless you say it didn't work for you. Nice link with a good blog, too.

                                                                      I've only run across the calasparra once (which I used for my faux paella last week) and that was in a wine store in New Jersey. I had had it frozen for goodness-knows-how-long, but it was still worked well.

                                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                                        I just tried it, 3/4c in a 12" paella. I did not notice anything particularly distinctive, compared say, with arborio. However I do not have a good heat source for this size of pan. So while most of the rice was done, some was still hard, and there was only a bit of semi-burnt crust in the middle. That's why I say paella is more technique than recipe. Regardless of 'decorations' (chorizo, artichoke hearts, pork tongue, etc), it comes down to cooking a thin layer of rice with just the right heat, liquid, and time. It is much easier to cook a thicker layer of rice in a covered pan, where steam plays a big part in cooking the rice evenly.
                                                                        ----------
                                                                        I just remembered that I have a cast iron heat tamer, which has the potential of spreading the heat from the butane burner evenly under this pan. I'll have to try it the next time around.

                                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                                          I think the next time I'll try the arborio rice, too. I've got a blue box of this around somewhere.
                                                                          http://www.demedici.com/products/Ital...
                                                                          But I note that Amazon carries a red and a green box
                                                                          http://www.demedici.com/products/Ital...
                                                                          The first link describes briefly the differences, but I'm not sure I would really know from their description there, except that maybe on Amazon, the red box says it's 'special.'

                                                                          Maybe Santa might bring you an induction hob. I had two that I use(d) constantly. But last week, DH put it one of them on the cooktop and inadvertently (smile) punched in the heat number on the cooktop instead of the induction hob.

                                                                          I bought mine from overstock a number of years ago for a reasonable cost, but it seems so silly now that they are available at any range of cost - IOW, the higher cost of one seems rather silly - after a certain price, how much greater can the innards be?

                                                                          Do you have an outside grill to experiment with? As for me, I don't think I'll be doing that - my grilling days are over.

                                                                          3/4 cup sounds about right according to the book "Paella," although one has to search a great deal for the amount of rice to use. He gives no amount of rice for any recipe, but only how much rice to use for how many people served for what sized pan. He starts off with a 13-1/2" pan, which is what I bought - phew! because I'd hate to buy another size pan -

                                                                          Will be making a paella again probably in a couple of weeks. I've got some all day experimental receipes in my 'things to make list."

                                                          2. I've made the Cooks Illustrated paella many time with great success. It's dead easy, relatively quick, and incredibly tasty. Try to use a good quality saffron like the coupe sold at Penzey's. The fragrance and color really come through on this dish.

                                                            My only problem with this recipe is that my stove is not nearly hot enough to develop socarrat, the crispy bits of rice that add a lovely crunchy texture to the best paella. But even without it, it is quite delicious.

                                                            Mr Taster

                                                            Cook's Illustrated

                                                            Paella

                                                            Serves 6. Published May 1, 2005.
                                                            Why this recipe works:

                                                            The key to our paella recipe was finding equipment and ingredients that stayed true to the dish’s heritage. First, we substituted a Dutch oven for a single-purpose paella pan. Then we pared down our ingredients, dismissing lobster (too much work), diced pork (sausage would be enough), fish (flakes too easily), and rabbit and snails (too unconventional). For our streamlined paella recipe, we were left with chorizo, chicken (boneless, skinless thighs), shrimp, and mussels (favored over scallops, clams, and calamari). When we focused on the rice, we found we preferred short-grain varieties. Valencia was our favorite, with Italian Arborio a close second.

                                                            This recipe is for making paella in a Dutch oven (the Dutch oven should be 11 to 12 inches in diameter with at least a 6-quart capacity). With minor modifications, it can also be made in a paella pan (see instructions below). Dry-cured Spanish chorizo is the sausage of choice for paella, but fresh chorizo or linguiça is an acceptable substitute. Soccarat, a layer of crusty browned rice that forms on the bottom of the pan, is a traditional part of paella. In our version, soccarat does not develop because most of the cooking is done in the oven. We have provided instructions to develop soccarat in step 5; if you prefer, skip this step and go directly from step 4 to 6.

                                                            Ingredients

                                                            1 pound extra-large shrimp (21/25), peeled and deveined
                                                            Olive oil
                                                            8-9 medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 2 tablespoons)
                                                            1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs , each thigh trimmed of excess fat and halved crosswise
                                                            1 red bell pepper , seeded and cut pole to pole into 1/2-inch-wide strips
                                                            8 ounces Spanish chorizo , sliced 1/2 inch thick on the bias (see note)
                                                            1 medium onion , chopped fine (about 1 cup)
                                                            1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes , drained, minced, and drained again
                                                            2 cups Valencia rice or Arborio
                                                            3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
                                                            1/3 cup dry white wine
                                                            1/2 teaspoon saffron threads , crumbled
                                                            1 bay leaf
                                                            1 dozen mussels , scrubbed and debearded
                                                            1/2 cup frozen green peas , thawed
                                                            2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
                                                            1 lemon , cut into wedges, for serving

                                                            Instructions

                                                            1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. Toss shrimp, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1 teaspoon garlic in medium bowl; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed. Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper; set aside.

                                                            2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Add peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, until skin begins to blister and turn spotty black, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer peppers to small plate and set aside.

                                                            3. Add 1 teaspoon oil to now-empty Dutch oven; heat oil until shimmering but not smoking. Add chicken pieces in single layer; cook, without moving pieces, until browned, about 3 minutes. Turn pieces and brown on second side, about 3 minutes longer; transfer chicken to medium bowl. Reduce heat to medium and add chorizo to pot; cook, stirring frequently, until deeply browned and fat begins to render, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer chorizo to bowl with chicken and set aside.

                                                            4. Add enough oil to fat in Dutch oven to equal 2 tablespoons; heat over medium heat until shimmering but not smoking. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 3 minutes; stir in remaining garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes; cook until mixture begins to darken and thicken slightly, about 3 minutes. Stir in rice and cook until grains are well coated with tomato mixture, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in chicken broth, wine, saffron, bay, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Return chicken and chorizo to pot, increase heat to medium-high and bring to boil, uncovered, stirring occasionally. Cover pot and transfer to oven; cook until rice absorbs almost all liquid, about 15 minutes. Remove pot from oven (close oven door to retain heat). Uncover pot; scatter shrimp over rice, insert mussels hinged side down into rice (so they stand upright), arrange bell pepper strips in pinwheel pattern, and scatter peas over top. Cover and return to oven; cook until shrimp are opaque and mussels have opened, 10 to 12 minutes.

                                                            5. Optional: If soccarat (see note) is desired, set Dutch oven, uncovered, over medium-high heat about 5 minutes, rotating pot 180 degrees after about 2 minutes for even browning.

                                                            6. Let paella stand, covered, about 5 minutes. Discard any mussels that have not opened and bay leaf, if it can be easily removed. Sprinkle with parsley and serve, passing lemon wedges separately.

                                                            7. If You're Using a Paella Pan
                                                            A paella pan makes for an attractive and impressive presentation. Use one that is 14 to 15 inches in diameter. A 14-inch ovensafe skillet will work as well, but do not attempt to use anything smaller because the contents will simply not fit. Follow the recipe for Paella, increasing the chicken broth to 3 1/4 cups and the wine to 1/2 cup. Before placing the pan in the oven, cover it tightly with foil. For soccarat, cook the paella, uncovered, over medium-high heat for about 3 minutes, rotating the pan 180 degrees after about 1 1/2 minutes for even browning.

                                                            Searching for Soccaret

                                                            Soccarat is the toasty, browned portion of rice that forms along the bottom of the pan. It is the hallmark of authentic paella. To create this crusty bottom layer of rice, return the Dutch oven to the stovetop for five minutes once the paella has finished baking.

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: Mr Taster

                                                              thanks Mr. Taster for a confirmation that CI recipe is tasty. Even though I don't know what paella 'should' taste like, mine was tasty enough. I used saffron from La Mancha and the Carasparra (sp?) rice. My reason for starting this thread was to get enough ideas to at least to try, and I did that, I picked a recipe and did it. I appreciate your reply.

                                                              1. re: Mr Taster

                                                                I saw this old thread when Foodfan83 revived the thread and I was browsing the forum for something fun to make.

                                                                I followed Mr Taster's CI recipe, and it was fabulous!

                                                                So fabulous, we had to repeat it a second time the next weekend. This time we used cheaper canned tomatoes and found it too acidic!

                                                                But overall an easy recipe to cook and an enjoyable meal!

                                                                Thanks so much for sharing the recipe.

                                                              2. I just watched the paella episode of "From Spain with Love" (Cooking Channel) last night. They visited a few paella specialists in and around Valencia, and what was most apparent was that every one of these expert, authentic paella cooks did things a little differently--different technique and order of ingredients.
                                                                What I also noticed is that everyone used big, big fire. Much bigger than I've ever had the guts to use. I suppose I'll have to adjust my stock to rice ratio, but I'm going to go for it that way next time.

                                                                One interesting technique with rosemary was setting a branch on fire just for a second and then setting it on top of the cooking paella. Might have to give that a try as well.

                                                                24 Replies
                                                                1. re: splatgirl

                                                                  It sounds as if you've made a few paellas. what ingredients do you use? Do you have a "technique"? Or the amount/weight/volume of ingredients ratio?

                                                                  I can't recall if you use rabbit and green beans :-))

                                                                  Has there ever been a dish that is so controversial?

                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                    The proportions I have written down are 1 1/4c. bomba rice to 1qt. stock. The second trick is figuring out how much rice will work well in your pan. As I said upthread, it's much better to err on the side of less rice than more. As far as liquid, that proportion works for me when I keep a decently vigorous boil throughout the rice cooking. A hotter fire with flame licking 6" up around the sides of the pan would probably want 1/4c. + more liquid.
                                                                    I like green beans (that was one consistent ingredient I noticed on the Spain with Love episode, although theirs are more like a flat bean than what an American green bean looks like). Also red pepper strips, both added later in the cooking so they hold a bit of texture.
                                                                    I use tomato and onion sofrito. Gasp, I know. It cook it until it's melted and almost starting to carmelize.
                                                                    Worst case, all you'd get for protein in the pan is chorizo. That can go in anytime depending on whether you like it really chewy and fried-ish (early) or not (later). Shrimp or scallops are regulars, too. Fast and easy. I am not adverse to chicken or rabbit, but I find it doesn't add enough to the experience for me to make it worth the additional effort and time.
                                                                    I really have no hard and fast ingredient rules. I am often out of chorizo because I've eaten it all at cocktail hour and it's hard to find locally. For me paella is more about the texture of the rice and the flavor, simple cooking outdoors and eating out of the pan. I never used to use pimenton, but I have always adored it and after I saw that "master" using it, I tried it and never looked back. The comments re: onion are interesting and I will try no onion next time.
                                                                    So, order of ingredients--sorry, I have no measurements, I just go by what seems right:
                                                                    hot oil
                                                                    tomato and onion sofrito
                                                                    pimenton
                                                                    rice
                                                                    stock and thread saffron ground with salt in a mortar and pestle
                                                                    chorizo
                                                                    veg
                                                                    seafood

                                                                    Getting the heat part of the puzzle dialed in is the other trick. Practice is my only advice, because it's always different depending on whether it's windy outside or not. You will notice the sound of pan starts to change as the rice approaches and then finishes cooking. I've heard it described as "singing" but to me it's crackling.

                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                      evidently I couldn't bear to cook those lovely fresh snap peas. we must have eaten them fresh.

                                                                       
                                                                      1. re: splatgirl

                                                                        Thanks for the time re your preparation. I appreciate it.

                                                                        I'm familiar with a flat bean here in the U.S., but I don't see it much anymore except in a frozen case, and it usually is labeled "Italian green beans." There are some pictures on this site
                                                                        http://www.google.com/search?tbm=isch...

                                                                        but only the really flat ones are the ones I'm talking abut.

                                                                        Your picutre is lovely, as well as your 'drinky-winkie." :-))

                                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                                          yea, I've never seen those beans fresh here. I'll ask my farmer if he knows a seed variety to look for. Not that I particularly care that the American style are inauthentic, but I can see that they probably end up a bit different texture.

                                                                          drinky-winkie=mojito made by Boy. Probably my other favorite thing about summer--the drink I mean. Boy is an all-season favorite :)

                                                                          1. re: splatgirl

                                                                            1080 has assorted recipes that provide the feel for the common elements of a good authentic paella. When my sister-in-law and I first made one, we read those recipes carefully and then consulted The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook's skillet paella recipe. We were surprised at how much the 1080 recipes and the ATK recipe had in common. Then we kept an eye on both and cooked...with great results...leaning toward the ingredients in 1080, where they differed. My friend, Cris, from Pamplona told me that 1080 was intended as a guide and to go with my gut...and it worked beautifully.

                                                                            1. re: judyl88

                                                                              The 1080 recetas de cocina book is not somewhere I would recommend anyone to turn to for authentic recipes. It is a very useful resource which documents people's aspirations in 1972, the dreg end of the Franco era. With daughters moving from their villages to the cities, away from their mothers and mother-in-laws, the success of this book comes from it's reputation as a survival guide for newly weds in unfamiliar territory with tight budgets. (I agree with Cris from Pamplona, this book was only ever meant to be a guide, it is not an authorative collection of the regional foods of Spain)

                                                                              If the paella recipes are to be viewed as authentic, then they are, if anything, a faithful approximation of the paellas served in restaurants at that time, not the real paellas made non-commercially in homes and in the countryside.

                                                                              There's a review of this book with which I am in (almost) complete agreement here:

                                                                              http://www.slate.com/id/2177019/pagen...

                                                                              I've never liked this recipe book, the paella recipes have always horrified me and there are a great many other recipes which literally turn my stomach.

                                                                              It is what it is, and its place in history is assured, just not for the reasons we might imagine.

                                                                              1. re: MoGa

                                                                                Thanks for your link to a review of the "1080" book.

                                                                                I am anxious to know if you have received the "Paella" book - Alberto Herraiz - and your thoughts.

                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                  The postman tried to deliver it a few days ago when I was back in Spain (too big for the letterbox). I should have it in my hands tomorrow evening.
                                                                                  On Sunday I had rice with monkfish and prawns at "El Titi", a place recommended in the rice blog I linked to. It was cooked in a paella pan but the rice grains were moist and succulent without being 'meloso'. The rice was bursting with flavour. I guess a lot of people would be turned off what I ate as there was no rainbow of colours slopped over the top.

                                                                                  Incidentally, the first world rice congress will be held this coming weekend in Valencia. Rice dishes from all over Spain will be demonstrated and discussed, as well as rice dishes from abroad. This particular congress also features a homage to the paella.
                                                                                  http://en.comunitatvalenciana.com/201...

                                                                                  1. re: MoGa

                                                                                    Alberto Herraiz - Paella
                                                                                    a personal opinion
                                                                                    Just been through this book and... well... there's only one thing wrong with it. And that's the titles of most of the recipes. I guess the whole reason his restaurant is successful is that people can associate what he cooks there with a word; paella. It's obviously not what he is actually offering, but the concept of regional 'arroces' is obviously too complicated, subtle, and difficult to grasp for the general public.
                                                                                    To showcase my point, one of my favourite specialities is "arroz a banda". NOWHERE (not anywhere which makes a decent version of this dish, anyway) would ever call this a paella even though it is made in a paella pan. Yes, you could call it "arroz en paella a banda" as he does, but it sounds terribly pedantic.
                                                                                    So my opinion is that this book is an interesting collection of Arroces that, yes, are made in paella pans.
                                                                                    The other example of why this isn't a paella bible is the recipe for what he calls Valencian Arroz en Paella. My impression is that this is a recipe from someone who knows intimately what an authentic Valencian paella is but has chosen to modify and adapt it in order to get tasty, consistent results in a foreign kitchen (it's surprisingly similar to my mother's adaptation of Alicantinian rice 'en paella' for England).
                                                                                    For myself, as I know how varied and rich the rice culture is in the South East of Spain and how few of these dishes have any legitimate right to be called 'authentic paella' I don't bother with paellas at all. Yet I still use paella pans and the special gas rings to cook them with. I am pleased to have purchased this book as it gives lots of ideas on making decent rice dishes that don't rely on key ingredients, a certain kind of water and orangewood smoke.
                                                                                    I can recognise in this book someone who does understand the fundamentals and that's not something I can say about most of the cooks and books who have been mentioned in this thread. I'm already inspired enough to try making pearled spelt in a paella pan. One thing you'll never hear me call my efforts though is 'spelt paella'. Spelt cooked in a paella pan is all it will be.

                                                                                    1. re: MoGa

                                                                                      I've seen online a picture of a 'paella' made with quinoa - in Peru.

                                                                                      You do have a special name(s) for a paella like dish made with pasta (fideos), Fideuà. And Italians call a risotto like dish made with farro (a pearled wheat relative) farrotto.

                                                                                      1. re: paulj

                                                                                        "I've seen online a picture of a 'paella' made with quinoa - in Peru.

                                                                                        You do have a special name(s) for a paella like dish made with pasta (fideos), Fideuà. And Italians call a risotto like dish made with farro (a pearled wheat relative) farrotto."
                                                                                        Yes, the Italian farro is the spelt I mentioned (I will be making spelt in a paella pan quite soon)
                                                                                        Fideuà is like paella in that it has a very specific set of ingredients and way of cooking it.

                                                                                        In the same way that paella is one of the many arroces, fideuà is related to fideos rossejats (also spelled arrosejats or rosellats)
                                                                                        http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fideos_a...
                                                                                        It's basically means 'browned pasta threads' (or pasta threads made golden
                                                                                        ) I hadn't realised, but in Catalonia they have a name for their own arroz dishes made in large pans and finished off in the oven
                                                                                        http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arrossejat
                                                                                        They have cook offs for these too, Ametlla de Mar has been holding theirs for over 20 years.
                                                                                        It really is such a shame that the abuse of the word paella just ends up obscuring all these wonderful arroces.

                                                                                        1. re: MoGa

                                                                                          For that last link you should have referenced the Catalan version :)

                                                                                          http://ca.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rossejat

                                                                                2. re: MoGa

                                                                                  "The 1080 recetas de cocina book is not somewhere I would recommend anyone to turn to for authentic recipes."

                                                                                  Another book authored by them is "The Book of Tapas." http://www.amazon.com/Book-Tapas-Simo...

                                                                                  I'm wondering if these tapa recipes are the same as the ones in the "1080" book.

                                                                                  http://www.amazon.com/1080-Recipes-Si...

                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                    My complaint about 1080 is that it makes no distinction between typical Spanish dishes and 'generic' Continental cooking.
                                                                                    For example 283 is Spaghetti alla carbonara - though the Spanish 'Espaguetis a la Italiana con bacon y huevos'.

                                                                                    345 is 'Zuchhini ratatouille/Pisto de Calabacin.

                                                                                    1006 is Silver dollar pancakes/tortillas americanas.

                                                                                    So using it for Spanish cooking is like trying learn some regional American style (e.g. BBQ, Soul) from Joy of Cooking. I'm not saying it does not have useful recipes.

                                                                                    1080 does not have a 'tapas' section, though you might find typical tapas items in the chapters on Appetizers, Cold plate suggestions, and Fried dishes.... and else where. Also in contrast with many tapas books, 1080 has few photos, though the drawings are interesting.

                                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                                      I just bought The Book of Tapas and I'm afraid to tear open the book's cellophane. At $25 (reg $40?) I'm wondering if it is a rehash of their recipes in 1080. I surely hope not. I hate taking a book back and probably won't.

                                                                                      If I get the courage (and time to compare) I'll let you know. However, if I get around to signing up for EYB, maybe if both books are itemized, I can compare more easily.

                                                                                      1. re: paulj

                                                                                        "345 is 'Zuchhini ratatouille/Pisto de Calabacin. "
                                                                                        Just to clarify that, apart from the ingredients - which came from South America - pisto isn't an international dish, it has very firm Spanish roots and would have developed in tandem with the French ratatouille.
                                                                                        I personally find the idea of courgette/zucchini heavy pisto rather redundant - don't see the point when you could have a fabulous zarangollo instead (I don't think zarangollo even made it into 1080 Recetas)

                                                                                        1. re: MoGa

                                                                                          There may be some problems with the English names, when they try evoke the better known French or Continental equivalents. 345 has zuchhini, peppers and tomatoes, but not the eggplant that is common in ratatouille.

                                                                                          More often this recipe is given the title of pisto manchego, e.g.
                                                                                          http://www.euroresidentes.com/eurores...
                                                                                          (this recipe also notes the similarity to ratatouille).

                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                            I'll blame Phaidon for this as some golden opportunities to clarify and enlighten English readers (or at least to 'disambiguate' the source text) have been piddled away, both in 1080 recetas and in the Paella book.
                                                                                            To be honest, I've never heard pisto being called "pisto Manchego" in Alicante. It's too ubiquitous in my region. Perhaps it's called by this name in other parts of Spain where it isn't so common (although I suspect that the people from La Mancha have a very definite way of preparing pisto that makes it theirs and that this is what Pisto Manchego really is, the Alicantinian versions I'm sure are just pistos)

                                                                                            I'll go back to the Alberto Herraiz book, "Paella" as I've had some more time now to absorb the contents.

                                                                                            It is VERY contradictory and rather confusing for anyone who takes the cover text of "everything you need to know to cook authentic paella at home..." at its word. The back cover text is also misleading.

                                                                                            On page 8 Herraiz says in the 4th paragraph:
                                                                                            "Strictly speaking, the name 'paella' only applies to the Valencian version. It is not correct to call other versions of the dish 'paella'"
                                                                                            He then goes on to say immediately afterwards
                                                                                            "instead they are known as arroz en paella, which literally means 'rice cooked in a paella pan'. In this book I have used the term 'paella rice' to describe the recipes."
                                                                                            This last bit is misleading - on the one hand, arroz dishes are not generally known as "arroz en paella", being 'known' as something isn't the same as being something that could be described as 'arroz en paella' should anyone have to ask about it. On the other hand, the Herraiz book then ignores his own statement and uses the word paella repeatedly 'incorrectly' throughout the rest of the book.
                                                                                            It really is up to the reader to remember this paragraph, and he makes it very hard to do so.
                                                                                            A few pages later, page 15, there is a rundown on different 'paella' variations:
                                                                                            Traditional Paella, Improvised Paellas, Paella a Banda, Paella Brut, Paella Ciega and Paella En Costra. As I said earlier, we NEVER call 'Arroz a Banda' 'Paella a Banda, nor do we ever call it 'Arroz en Paella a Banda', and we never call 'Paella en Costra' (AKA Arroz con Costra) a paella either and it certainly isn't 'Arroz en Costra en Paella' as it is made always in an earthenware dish. Elche and the other towns/village where this dish evolved from were noted for having certain kinds of houses - 'Alquerías', some of which still stand near Elche's city centre - these had large ovens. As most of the people from Valencia/Alicante did not use ovens, this speciality has its own evolutionary path. It can be traced to medieval times and the need for an oven means that it has more of an aristocratic heritage - Ruperto de Nola, chef of the King of Naples, documented a similar recipe in a book attributed to him from 1525. It could be that the accessibility of steel paella pans in the 1800s finally allowed the general population to make their own variations of the oven dishes that only the well to do could have made for them (just because it proclaimed "I HAVE A LARGE OVEN!", a very large 'arroz con costra' must have been a status dish even though the ingredients seem humble).

                                                                                            The other problem with this book if expecting it to be a definitive guide to 'technique' is that in his break down (page 16+) on what the technique is he instructs readers to stir the rice in a sofrito before adding stock.
                                                                                            This is fine but ignores that the authentic or at least 'correctly' named Valencian paella isn't made this way. The rice of a true Valencian paella is added only once the water has been added to the pan.

                                                                                            Although I spent nearly a month in Spain this summer I had a very active 2 year old in tow so couldn't browse the book stores as I wished to. There are a few books published that write about and document the different Arroz specialities from the Alicante and the full Valencia regions. I'm keen to build up my own collection as I still have a lot to learn about this huge and rather complex subject.
                                                                                            I still think that the Herraiz book is worthwhile, one just needs to be aware of the contradictions (many of which could have been resolved with better editing) and understand what Herraiz's direction is and motives for publishing are).

                                                                                            Rella
                                                                                            One of my favourite Spanish cook books is "La Cocina Gitana de Matilde Amaya". Unfortunately, it's not available in English and her measurements are extremely difficult to grasp (two fingers of olive oil, one glass of such and such, and so on). Sometime soon I will cook one of her rice dishes (it's the sort of thing that gets called paella but isn't) and translate it here with the measurements I used to recreate it. Alas, I may need a couple of weeks as things have got quite busy at home.

                                                                                            1. re: MoGa

                                                                                              It was this online collection of rice dishes
                                                                                              http://www.euroresidentes.com/Recetas...
                                                                                              that first alerted me to the diversity of Spanish rice preparations.

                                                                                              The question of when to add the rice is an interesting one. Most of the paella videos show them adding the rice to the boiling liquid, followed by a stir. On the other hand I grew up, so to speak, with the South American 'pilaf' approach where the rice (usually long grain) is toasted a bit in oil (often colored with achiote) before adding the liquid. But the pilaf ideal is somewhat different - fluffy and well separated grains.

                                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                                If you look again at that list of rices dishes you provided a link for you'll notice that pretty much all of the dry rice dishes made in paella pans that aren't the true versions of Valencian paella have instructions to fry the rice in oil before adding the water/stock. There are only a couple of authentic paella recipes on that list and both stipulate that you add the rice to boiling liquid.

                                                                                                1. re: MoGa

                                                                                                  I just made a Mexican arroz con pollo (rice with chicken) that called for simmering the chicken in one pan, toasting the rice in another, then replacing the rice some aromatics, before combining it all, including the stock from the chicken.

                                                                                                  In contrast, the traditional 'huerta'(orchard) style of paella is done in one open pan over an open fire. There isn't a convenient way to the toast the rice even if you wanted to. The simplest thing with one pan is to brown the meat, move that to the edges to brown the aromatics, add liquid to partially cook the meat, and finally add the rice.

                                                                                              2. re: MoGa

                                                                                                From the website of one of the Gitana coauthors
                                                                                                http://www.evacelada.com/2002/09/18/l...
                                                                                                with some sample pages

                                                                                                1. re: MoGa

                                                                                                  Several of the rice dishes at http://www.euroresidentes.com/ are attributed to Restaurante Casa Cantó Benissa, Alicante
                                                                                                  http://www.casacanto.com/
                                                                                                  Their menu has an Arroces page, with a group of
                                                                                                  Arroces Mellosos (moist, also some caldoso, soupy ones
                                                                                                  )and a group of
                                                                                                  Arroces en paella
                                                                                                  this second group includes
                                                                                                  - Arroz a banda
                                                                                                  - Arroz del senyoret
                                                                                                  - paella con bacalao .. (with salt cod,...)
                                                                                                  - Arroz al horno (oven cooked)
                                                                                                  - Fideua (the noodle version)
                                                                                                  - Paella Marinera (with seafood)
                                                                                                  - Arroz Ximo (a house special?)
                                                                                                  - Paella Alicantina

                                                                                                  A caution about the euroresidentes recipes - the instructions for the restaurant recipes are brief, and may gloss over some steps. They are probably more useful for major ingredient combinations, rather than method details or quantities.

                                                                          2. I generally follow the Tyler Florence "Paella with Seafood, Chicken, & Chorizo", but I find you can cut in half and it still is 2 to 4 servings. I like the start of it with the chicken rubbed in the spice mixture. Browning that, then continuing with the chorizo (I use chicken chorizo) just seems to keep the flavors building.

                                                                            When it comes to adding seafood, I just get whatever is the freshest and throw it in according to cooking time. Quickest cooking goes in last.

                                                                            Making paella for one isn't worth it, but I may just have to do that soon. I love paella!

                                                                            16 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Barbara76137

                                                                              Chicken chorizo!?!?!

                                                                              I've no idea why the recipe you use ended up being called 'paella', Tyler has a remarkably similar recipe to this (only the 'traditional' spice mix is excluded) listed as "Barcelona Style Rice"... which is a much, MUCH better name for this dish.
                                                                              http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ty...

                                                                              1. re: MoGa

                                                                                What are you talking about? A cursory comparison of both recipe ingredient list shows that they are remarkably similar.

                                                                                http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ty...

                                                                                Mr Taster

                                                                                1. re: MoGa

                                                                                  It's quite likely that the 'chicken chorizo' is Mexican style, not an esoteric Spanish style, much less an imported Spanish one.

                                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                                    There is no "chicken chorizo" in either of those recipes, and they're almost identical recipes anyway so I really have no idea what MoGa's post was meant to convey.

                                                                                    Either way, although there are parallels in cooking methods between Tyler's recipe and Cooks, the Cooks recipe I posted above is a superior recipe for several reasons; it is more precise in specifying method and what ingredients to use. For example, CI calls for "Arborio or Valencia rice" vs. the generic "short or medium grain Spanish rice" which a new or inexperienced cook wouldn't find labeled as such in the typical US supermarket).

                                                                                    Additionally the CI method is better, promoting better flavor development and complexity. Removing the chicken before adding chorizo allows the rendered chicken fat to get hotter, which you can then cook the sausage in, promoting more efficient browning and flavor development.

                                                                                    Also using chicken stock and wine rather than just water boosts the flavor of CI's paella.

                                                                                    However, the real cardinal sin of Tyler's recipe (a rookie mistake that certainly shouldn't be coming from a professional chef) is adding the seafood and simmering it submerged in hot liquid for 15 minutes-- which will yield rubbery seafood.

                                                                                    CI's method allows the seafood to slowly steam, yielding perfectly cooked shrimp and mussels.

                                                                                    Mr Taster

                                                                                    1. re: Mr Taster

                                                                                      Chicken chorizo is what Barbara76137 used (that's what MoGa was responding to)

                                                                                      1. re: paulj

                                                                                        Ah I misunderstood then. Barbara must be using a Mexican-style soft chorizo instead of the dry cured Spanish chorizo. I've never seen a dry cured chicken chorizo.

                                                                                        Mr Taster

                                                                                  2. re: MoGa

                                                                                    Tyler's 'paella' recipe is from a 2004 show, the 'barcelona style' is a later 2009 show with 'paella' in the episode name. So in the later he's being more careful about terminology. I'm surprised you didn't wave a red flag about the onion (in both). :)

                                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                                      One must pick one's battles :) And just saw now your calling out the Mexican style chorizo an hour and a half before me... whoops!

                                                                                      I noticed that Tyler uses smoked paprika in the later recipe. Interesting because I prefer using this less traditional, smokier chorizo over the more traditional kind.

                                                                                      http://www.google.com/products/catalo...

                                                                                      Mr Taster

                                                                                    2. re: MoGa

                                                                                      MoGa, Tyler calls for traditional chorizo, but I try to avoid pork so if I can use chicken I routinely use that as a substitute. Go ahead and crucify me for not using true Spanish chorizo, but the results are still delicious.

                                                                                      1. re: Barbara76137

                                                                                        Sorry Barabara, but I've run out of steam and am in no mood for crucifictions (not that I ever was, I'm just out to defend my cultural heritage). You can use any kind of sausage you want in your rice dishes. The point I've made much earlier in this thread - several times - is that NO style of sausage belongs in authentic paella.

                                                                                        My surprise was that such a thing as chicken chorizo even existed. I've never seen anything remotely like it in Europe. So I've learned something completely new here. Thank you!

                                                                                        1. re: MoGa

                                                                                          I suppose the same spices or ingredients go into chicken chorizo as they do in 'regular' chorizo. If so, a chicken chorizo and a regular chorizo will taste the same, whether it be dried or un-dried chorizo.

                                                                                          I have grown un-fond of the taste of chorizo - sorta gaggy to me and even though cooked separately to add to any dish, it will permeate the dish for me as well as be a taste to remain for hours to come - IOW, the taste keeps on giving.

                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                            Americans need to be very clear regarding the style of chorizo that they are talking about. Mexican is very different from Spanish. And even the quality and taste of the Mexican varies widely.

                                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                                              Yup... Barbara, you should Google Spanish tortilla vs Mexican tortilla for another example of something with the same Spanish name that is altogether different.

                                                                                              Also, I am not making the argument as to whether making paella with untraditional ingredients can or cannot yield a tasty dish. As I said earlier, I prefer making my paella with an untraditional chorizo (though mine is not nearly as untraditional as yours!)

                                                                                              Mr Taster

                                                                                              1. re: Mr Taster

                                                                                                A few days after Thanksgiving I made paella, or a paella like dish, using leftover turkey. And used a 10" non-skillet. And arborio rice. While it is nice to know the details of authentic paella (both ingredients and technique), most of us don't have to impress a Valencian suegra (MIL) .

                                                                                              2. re: paulj

                                                                                                I agree, paulji, that Mexican chorizo and Spanish chorizo are quite different, and I believe brands within these two countries can taste differently also.

                                                                                                Here's one person (me) that has done her homework on chorizo. I'm not eating it again, no matter who, what, where, when and how :-)))

                                                                                            2. re: MoGa

                                                                                              Dear MoGa,
                                                                                              I want to thank you for your educational information re Paella. Perhaps those reading all above will be clear about your devotion.

                                                                                              I agree with Paulji in his post re suegra - a delightful new word for me,

                                                                                      2. Ive tried many paella recipes and like acgold7 said "Well, it's really all about personal taste, isn't it? Whichever of those recipes look good and doable to you, you should try."... My personal favorite is the grilled paella mixta here on chow. Heres the link
                                                                                        http://www.chow.com/recipes/29656-gri...