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PAELLA - CLASSIC VALENCIA COOKING

 

 There are many, many versions of Spain's classic dish from the region of Valencia. Seafood is very common but non-seafood options are loved, too. 

INGREDIENTS:
6 cups warm chicken stock
8 to 10 strands saffron
1 large red onion, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, crushed and roughly chopped
2 large bell peppers, cut in 1-inch slices
2 large tomatoes, chopped
4 links fresh chorizo sausage, sliced in 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup Rosemary olive oil
8 chicken legs, skin on
1/4 cup Sherry vinegar
2 tbsp smoked paprika
2 cups paella or short-grain rice
 
DIRECTIONS:
Place stock in large pot over low heat. Add saffron and gently simmer for 2 minutes. In small bowl place onion and garlic. In another bowl, place peppers and tomato. Place chorizo into another bowl. Heat BBQ to high heat. Place paella pan on the grill and drizzle in olive oil. Add chicken legs and using a long pair of tongs brown chicken turning occasionally so the skin is seared and crisp. Add onions and garlic and saute until onions are barely brown, around 2 to 3 minutes. Add chorizo and cook still turning chicken until everything is browning. Pour vinegar into pan to deglaze and scrape onion bits from the bottom. Add tomatoes, sprinkle with paprika and cook until soft. Add peppers and saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Add dry rice and mix well with other ingredients. Toast for 1 to 2 minutes until no liquid remains in the pan, then arrange chicken legs in a circle and evenly spread out the rice, chorizo and vegetable mixture. Slowly pour in stock the way you would if you were making risotto, adding just enough stock to where the handles attach to the paella pan. Leave for at least 15 minutes. The stock will boil and you'll hear the paella start to dry out as it sizzles. Check the rice to see if it is tender. Add more stock if the rice is not tender enough. Close grill lid to allow the rice to finish cooking. To test if your paella is done, use tongs to scrape the bottom of the pan. If some rice comes up in one chunk with a caramelized bottom, you know it's forming perfectly. Leave the pan on the heat for another 3 to 5 minutes. Keep checking, gently, in different places around the pan until the rice is caramelized. Remove from heat and allow the paella to rest for 5 minutes before serving.