Chicken, Mussel and Scallop Paella

Saturday, April 10, 2010

My sister was in town from accupuncture school for Easter and spring break and specifically requested my Dad's Paella.  In turn, my Dad had received Iranian Saffron from a friend who had done some travelling, and he was excited to use it.  Saffron must be used sparingly, and tends to be costly, but you need so very little of it...and the result is really impressive and different from your standard fare.

Paella usually has chicken as well as several seafood components.  Choose your favorites and mix and match!

Chicken, Mussel and Scallop Paella

Here's what we used:

3 boneless skinned chicken breasts – cut in 1” cubes
4 medium sized andouille sausage – sliced about ¼” thick
4 Tbsps olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic
1 ½ cups of medium or long grain white rice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper (I generally pepper to taste – I like a bit of heat in the dish)
1 tsp saffron threads
4 cups chicken broth
1 lb of shrimp – shelled and deveined
1 lb of scallops – small Patagonia scallops are great for this
1 lb of fresh mussels
2 cans artichoke hearts – cut into ½” cubes
1 jar pimentos - chopped
½ cup of peas (we used frozen)
Several springs fresh rosemary
Optional – 8 lobster or crab claws

Here's what we did:

In a large flat bottom pan (I use a special covered paella pan but any large flat bottomed pan with a lid will work), brown chicken in olive oil. Once chicken is brown add onion and garlic, cooking all til brown. Remove from pan and reserve – save some of the pot liquor for the next step.

Add rice to pan and cook until golden and transparent. Add salt, pepper and chicken stock bringing all ingredients to a boil – dissolve saffron threads and add chicken, onion and garlic back to pan. Cover and cook on low for 30 minutes.

Add shrimp, scallops, mussels, artichoke, pimentos, peas and lobster/crab (optional) to pan. Cover and let steam for 20 – 30 minutes (check to see when mussels have opened – good sign its ready). Let the paella rest covered for about 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley or cilantro (adds a nice flavor).

Serve with fresh lemon slices. The ingredients are pricy but the end result is fantastic – ensure you taste along the way to bring out the flavors you enjoy. The smell of the finished paella is worth the price alone!


Upupaepops said...

printed and planning.

I found some fairly economical Saffron at trader joes a few weeks ago.

when I saw your Easter entry it was a "for sure to try" moment

Upupaepops said...

I just noticed that you do not mention the andouille below in the directions. I assume that it is browned off with the chicken

CFO said...

Oops! You've got a great eye. :) He added the sausage at the end, and just warmed it through, as its precooked. However, browning it with the chicken would add a lovely pop to the skin and add to the overall flavor!

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