Pairings

Paella Valenciana Paired with a Red Blend Alicante

pairings

Paella Valenciana is one of my favourite dishes! I’ve posted a simpler version of this recipe (Chicken, Chorizo and Prawn paella). However, as I’m in Valencia, the home of incredible seafood and wonderful paellas, I decided to re-create this recipe using some incredibly fresh local ingredients. I’m sure you’ll agree that this is a beautiful paella and paired with a local wine from Alicante, I think that even the locals would approve!

Prepping the Ingredients

  • Basically, you need to begin by finding a local fish monger. I managed to find some incredibly fresh langostines and mussels here in Alicante, which wasn’t too difficult to come by, as the ocean is within view!!! However, it is so important to get the highest quality seafood you can find, as the freshness of flavours will truly make all the difference.
  • The next thing I found was authentic Spanish paella rice from the Valencia DO and paella seasoning. Most supermarkets carry paella rice but paella seasoning was definitely something I hadn’t seen before. The Paella seasoning is basically a combination of (ground saffron, turmeric, paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and salt).
  • You’ll also need to find Chorizo. As I’m currently visiting Spain, it is everywhere. I chose to purchase pre-sliced Chorizo from the local supermarket. You want thin slices, as it’s easier to chew.

Cooking the Paella

  • Bring one Litre of fish stock to a simmer in a saucepan. If you can’t find fish stock, then use chicken or vegetable stock. I think the fish stock adds a bit of a seafood flavour that the chicken and vegetable stock just can’t offer. The choice is entirely up to you! Make sure that you keep the fish stock warm until you’re ready to add it later. You don’t want to add cold fish stock to a warm paella, as it lowers the cooking temperature.
Fish stock warming
  • Combine the Paella rice, chopped artichoke hearts, freshly chopped tomatoes, Chorizo, paella seasoning, sweet paprika, and frozen peas in a separate bowl. Make sure you chop the Chorizo slices into bite size pieces.
All the ingredients mixed together in a hot pink bowl!! Loving this vibrant medley of colour!!
  • Dice the chicken breast into 2cm pieces, removing any fat. Then chop the cloves of garlic and dice the spring onions making sure to discard the white part. Oddly enough, I had difficulty finding the garlic and spring onions in the supermarket. When I eventually found them, I couldn’t believe the size of the garlic and the spring onions…gigantic! I was looking for the typical golf-ball sized garlic and the wimpy stalks of spring onions that make their way into our London grocery stores. I couldn’t locate them in the Spanish supermercado because they were so much bigger than what I’m used to!! How sad is that?!?!?
  • Next, grab your paella pan. If you don’t own one, then I highly recommend purchasing one. It really comes in handy for making this dish, as well as adding a bit more of an authentic touch to the whole experience! You will need a pan that is at least 40cm wide and about 5-7cm deep for this recipe.
  • Add the olive oil to the paella pan and turn heat to medium-high. Once the olive oil is relatively warm, add the diced chicken and cook for about 1 minute on each side. Then add the garlic and spring onions. Cook for another minute.

  • Next, add the Paella rice, chopped artichoke hearts, freshly chopped tomatoes, Chorizo, Paella seasoning, sweet paprika, and frozen peas to the paella pan. Combine ingredients gently with a spoon and then add the 500ml of the fish stock and season with salt and pepper to taste.
uncooked paella
Wow!! Look at that gorgeous yellow colour!
  • Bring the ingredients to a gentle boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, adding more fish stock as it is absorbed. Gently scrape the bottom of the pan once in awhile to prevent burning. Some people prefer to leave it, as the ingredients carmelise and add more flavour to the dish. The choice is yours!
  • After 12 minutes, add your fresh uncooked mussels to the paella. Try and place them hinge side down so you will be able to see when they’ve opened.
mussels in paella valenciana
Can you see the mussels beginning to open?
  • After 2-3 minutes, the mussels should open. Discard any that don’t!! If a mussel doesn’t open it means that quite possibly it was dead before cooking. Just to be on the safe side, you will want to discard it, otherwise, there is a huge risk of getting food poisoning. Once the mussels start to open, place the cooked langostines on top of the paella for another minute or two just until they are warmed.
  • Serve this dish warm with crusty bread!

Wine Pairing

Alcanta Vino Mediterraneo and Paella

Paella Valenciana

A colourful paella with all the flavours and aromas of Valencia, Spain!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Spanish
Keyword: paella, seafood, Spanish food, Valencia
Servings: 8 people

Equipment

  • paella pan (minimum 40cm wide)

Ingredients

  • 1 Litre Fish stock
  • 500 grams Paella Rice
  • 400 grams Small artichokes drained and cut in half (tinned or in a jar)
  • 3 large Tomatoes chopped into small pieces
  • 100 grams Chorizo slices (cut into small pieces)
  • 2 tsp Paella seasoning
  • 1 tsp Sweet Paprika
  • 300 grams Frozen peas
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil
  • 500 grams Fresh chicken breast cut into 2 cm cubes
  • 5 Spring onions diced
  • 2 tbsp Finely chopped garlic
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 1 kg Fresh mussels in their shells (washed and scrubbed of any critters!!)
  • 500 grams Langostines that have been cooked (They should be pink!)
  • crusty baguette sliced

Instructions

Method

  • Bring 1 Litre of fish stock to a simmer in a saucepan. If you can't find fish stock, then use chicken or vegetable stock.
  • Keep the fish stock warm until you're ready to add it later.
  • Combine the Paella rice, chopped artichoke hearts, freshly chopped tomatoes, Chorizo, Paella seasoning, sweet paprika, and frozen peas in a separate bowl.
  • Dice the chicken breast into 2cm pieces, removing any fat.
  • Chop the cloves of garlic and dice the spring onions making sure to discard the white part.
  • You will need a pan that is at least 40cm wide and about 5-7cm deep.
  • Add the olive oil to the paella pan and turn heat to medium-high. Once the olive oil is relatively warm, add the diced chicken and cook for about 1 minute on each side.
  • Add the garlic and spring onions. Cook for another minute.
  • Next, add the Paella rice, chopped artichoke hearts, freshly chopped tomatoes, Chorizo, Paella seasoning, sweet paprika, and frozen peas to the paella pan.
  • Combine ingredients gently with a spoon and then add the 500ml of the fish stock and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Bring the ingredients to a gentle boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, adding more fish stock as it is absorbed. Gently scrape the bottom of the pan once in awhile to prevent burning. Some people prefer to leave it, as the ingredients carmelise and add more flavour to the dish. The choice is yours!
  • After 12 minutes, add your fresh uncooked mussels to the paella. Try and place them hinge side down so you will be able to see when they've opened.
  • After 2-3 minutes, the mussels should open. Discard any that don't!!
  • At this point, place the cooked langostines on top of the paella for another minute or two just until they are warmed.
  • Serve this dish warm with crusty bread!

Wine Pairing

  • Pair this Paella Valenciana with a medium-bodied, fresh and fruity red blend from Spain.