Traditional Spanish Paella Valenciana

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I’m super excited to write this post! Paella holds a near and dear place in my heart. My family and I actually just moved to America from Spain where we lived for the past 2 years. And what an amazing experience it was! We strolled down cobblestoned streets and ate at outdoor cafes almost daily. Plus I learned to make authentic Spanish Paella in the kitchen of a dear Spanish friend. So it is with great excitement that I’m sharing this recipe with you and I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does. I’m including a few bonus pictures of where we lived after the recipe…so keep scrolling for a peek.

Traditional Spanish cuisine is simple, down-to-earth food using ingredients available locally and regionally grown crops. Spain was shaped by the uniting of several small kingdoms, each with their own culture and food traditions. This creates a diverseness in cuisine throughout the land. Paella originated in the region of Valencia where rice dominates the menu. It is typically cooked in a large flat pan where the rice is infused with the delicious flavors of paprika and saffron.

Yield: 6-8 Servings

Paella Valenciana

Paella Valenciana

Paella originated in the region of Valencia
where rice dominates the menu. It is typically cooked in a large flat pan where
the rice is infused with the delicious flavors of paprika and saffron.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2-3 tbs olive oil
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh uncooked green beans, washed and ends trimmed
  • 2 ½ cups short-grain rice, preferably Valencia or bomba
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbs smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp saffron, crushed
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1-2 cups water (more or less as needed)
  • 1 cup artichoke hearts, drained
  • About 3-4 jarred roasted red peppers, cut into strips

Garnish

  • Smoked paprika for sprinkling
  • Lemon wedges for serving

Instructions

    1.Heat the oil in the paella pan over medium heat, then add and brown the chicken pieces on both sides. Transfer the chicken to a plate.


    2.Add the tomato and sauté for 2 minutes.


    3.Add the green beans and continue cooking 2-3 minutes.


    4.Pour the chicken broth into the pan. Add the salt, paprika and saffron and combine.


    5.Position the beans the way you'd like them to appear in the final dish.


    6.Sprinkle in the rice evenly around the dish. DO NOT STIR.


    7.Once the mixture begins to bubble, position the chicken pieces in the pan followed by the artichokes and then top with the peppers.


    8.Cook uncovered on medium-high heat for about 10 minutes. Lower the heat and simmer uncovered on low for about 15-20 more minutes or until the rice is done. If water absorbs completely and rice is not yet tender, continue to add water a little bit at a time until rice is done.


    9. When the rice is done, increase the heat for a few minutes to further caramelize the bottom, creating the crispy golden-browned bottom or “socarrat”


    10.Sprinkle with some smoked paprika and serve with lemon wedges.


Notes

If you do not have a paella pan, a large skillet will work but cooking times may vary. I have attached a link a typical pan you can get in Spain.

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