Seafood and Chorizo Paella

My family and I absolutely love paella. It’s such a great dish when you have access to beautiful, fresh seafood and it’s perfect for feeding a big group of people. This recipe is based on a recipe by Frank Camorra, a champion of Spanish food in Australia and the owner and executive chef of the amazing tapas Movida restaurants in Australia. If you’re ever in Melbourne or Sydney go to Movida – it’s seriously good food! Anyway, I hope you enjoy this recipe!

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This recipe will serve 4-6 people.

Ingredients

  • 5 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 125 ml (½ cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1½ finely diced brown onions
  • about 10 thyme sprigs
  • 2 good quality chorizo, sliced into 1/2cm pieces
  • 6-10 mini capsicums in a variety of colours  (you can buy these at pre-packed at Coles)
  • 1½ red capsicums, diced
  • 1½ green capsicums, diced
  • salt
  • 5 medium tomatoes, peeled, diced and seeded
  • 400 g paella rice (Calasparra rice is best but any short grain rice will do)
  • 1.3 litres fish stock mixed with 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 400 g cleaned calamari tubes cut into rings
  • 500 g cubed firm fish, I use orange roughy or blue eye
  • 1 cup broad beans (or peas), approximately
  • 12 large green prawns
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) fish stock mixed with ½ tbsp toasted saffron
  • 12 mussels, cleaned with beards removed
  • ½ cup chopped parsley
  • about 12 lemon wedges

Method

You need a large paella pan or heavy based fry pan about 45 cm in diameter at the base for this recipe.

Using a BBQ with a lid, place the paella pan on the flat plate on a low heat. If you don’t have a BBQ with a lid a paella a hot plate will do. If you do use a frying pan make sure that it doesn’t have a plastic handle or anything else that would melt.Add the oil to the pan, then add the garlic and the diced onion and stir briefly. Add the thyme and cook for the about 5 minutes on a medium heat.

Meanwhile grill the chorizo pieces on the BBQ to get a nice char on the chorizo and give it a nice smokey flavour. Once nicely charred add the chorizo the paella pan and continue to cook.

Add the red and green capsicum to the paella pan and season with salt. Stir briefly and allow to cook for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile drizzle olive oil on the mini capsicums and cook them on a grill until softened, slightly charred and nice and sweet! When cooked, remove from the grill and set aside.

Returning to the paella pan, turn the heat up high, add the tomato and stir in, then cook for a few minutes more. Add the calamari and the rice and stir for 2 minutes. Add 1L of the fish stock mixed with the tomato paste.

Add the broad beans and nestle the fish into the stock and rice. Do not stir the paella, we are trying to get a nice crust on the base of the paella and stirring the rice will disrupt this process. Arrange the prawns  into the paella  and add the saffron stock mixture. Arrange the mussels evenly around the paella pan until the shells have opened, the seafood is cooked and the rice is tender.

When the seafood is nearly ready, turn up the heat as high as possible to It’s a good idea to cover the paella with foil or a lid for the last 5 minutes of the cooking. When finished there should not be much liquid in the paella at all. A paella is not runny in the way a risotto is, most of the liquid should be cooked off, but ensure the rice is cooked well. If most of the liquid has gone and the rice is still not cooked, add a bit more stock or water and cook the liquid off until the rice is cooked.

Add plenty of chopped parsley and cover with one or two tea towels. Turn off the heat and rest the rice for 5-10 minutes. Add the mini capsicums  to the paella pan and serve with lemon wedges.

Happy Eating xx

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