Spanish Paella Recipe

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Saffron gives the rice it's characteristic hue.
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“Home Sausage Making” by Charles G. Reavis and Evelyn Battaglia with Mary Reilly offers recipes for pork, beef, lamb, veal, wild game, poultry, seafood, and even vegetarian sausages ensure that are pleasing options for every palate.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 3/4 pound boneless, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1/4 pound Spanish-Style Chorizo, Linguiça, or other highly spiced sausage, cut into 1/4 -inch thick slices
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons pimentón (smoked paprika)
  • 1 red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 1-1/4 cups Bomba or Calasparra rice
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas (thawed)
  • 1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 pound mussels and/or clams, cleaned
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Lemon wedges, for serving


  • Heat a paella pan or large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the oil. When hot and shimmering, carefully lay the chicken thighs, skin side down, in the oil. Cook until the skin is rendering fat and starting to crisp. Turn the chicken thighs over and add the chorizo, garlic, onion, and carrot. Cook for 5 minutes longer, or until the onion starts to soften. Add the pimentón, bell pepper, tomato paste, and saffron. Stir to incorporate.
  • Add the rice to the pan and stir to coat with the tomato oil. Add the chicken stock and salt to taste and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover. Let simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir in the peas and shrimp and nestle the mussels and/or clams in the rice. Cover and cook for another 5 minutes, or until the shrimp are opaque throughout and the mussels have opened (discard any that remain closed).
  • Serve immediately, topped with the parsley and a drizzle of olive oil and with lemon wedges for spritzing.

A paella pan is not essential to preparing this Spanish favorite, but it does help ensure that the rice forms that desirable layer of crust, called socarrat, on the bottom (avoiding stirring at the end also helps).

In Spain, there are countless variations on paella, some with only seafood, others with rabbit, but all with saffron, which gives the rice its characteristic hue. This version leans toward the most famous, paella Valenciana, which features shrimp, mussels (or clams), chicken, and chorizo.

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