Spanish Paella

Paired with a well-structured Spanish Tempranillo this dish is  perfect for celebrating anything! 

Paella originated in Valencia, and is traditionally cooked in a wide, shallow pan above a live  fire. Mountain paella includes meats such as wild game, boar, and quail, and seaside paella  incorporates ingredients such as prawns, squid and shellfish. I have adapted it to use a Dutch  Oven over a gas flame, and we use a variety of leftovers – what we call “fridge paella” but  always add spicy chorizo sausage. Paired with a well-structured Spanish Tempranillo this dish is  perfect for celebrating anything! 


2-3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon Spanish sweet paprika 

1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tbsp fresh 

1 tsp fresh thyme 

1 bay leaf 

1 pinch saffron threads 

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes – optional  

salt and black pepper to taste 

Leftover cooked pork tenderloin or chicken, cut into ½ inch cubes, approx. 8 oz • 3 cloves garlic, crushed 

1 ¼ cup uncooked short-grain white rice – Paella or “Bomba” rice 

4-5 cups chicken stock 

2 lemons, zested 

2 tablespoons olive oil 

1 cup diced tomatoes, ½ inch dice  

1 ½ cups green beans, chopped into one-inch pieces 

1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped 

1 pound spicy chorizo sausage, casings removed and sliced 

One dozen large shrimp, deveined 

1 pound of mussels, shells scrubbed and de-bearded 


  In a medium bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons olive oil, with the spices: paprika, oregano,  thyme, saffron, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Stir in chicken and pork pieces to coat with the  spice mixture.  

In a large Dutch Oven or Paella pan heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Sear the  sliced chorizo until browned. Take out the sausage, and into the fat stir the rice, garlic, and red  pepper flakes. I like to use the spicy chorizo and so do not add any more red pepper flakes at  this point, but may add it later just before serving. Cook, stirring, to coat rice with oil, about 3  minutes. Stir in the spiced meats, bay leaf, chicken stock, tomatoes, red peppers and lemon  zest. Bring to a boil, do NOT cover, and then reduce heat to medium low. Let dish simmer  without stirring for 20-25 minutes. This is a great time to sit and relax with your friends over a  glass of Spanish Rioja wine, and we love a good Tempranillo with this dish.  

During the last five minutes of the Paella rice cook time, bring a separate pot of salted water to  a boil and cook the beans until just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain.  

Add the beans to the paella and stir.  

Add the prawns, and spoon some of the hot rice over the prawns, tucking them into the hot  rice to cook.  

Continue to cook the paella, occasionally turning the shrimp, until both sides of the prawns are  pink. 

In a separate saucepan heat a small amount of white wine until it comes to a boil. Add the  mussels and stir until all the shellfish have opened, about 3-5 minutes.  

Taste the paella and adjust seasonings as you like. I use homemade chicken stock which often needs more salt and pepper than store-bought stock, and if using a mild chorizo I will add red  pepper flakes at this point.  

You can either put the Dutch Oven on the table family style or transfer the Paella into a nice  big ceramic bowl. Top with mussels. 

We like to pair this dish with a Spanish Tempranillo or any good red from La Rioja region. Buen  Apetito!  

Contributed by Leanna Rathkelly  

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