Everyone I have made this for always loves this! An easy and simple Chicken Paella that’s a delight to the eye and a joy to the palate.
This is a simple yet flavorful paella. I was inspired to make this at home in the summer of 2010 after our trip to Barcelona where I tasted what was to be a truly excellent paella.
It was seafood paella with jumbo shrimps and mussels. What a gustatory delight!
Below is a photo of the paella we had.
Alas, I do not live near the sea, so making paella using the freshest seafood is not always possible. Also, making a paella dish can be rather intimidating.
Nonetheless, I decided to make this favorite rice dish of mine with ingredients that are at hand. I did not include saffron threads because sometimes they are not readily available and they’re quite expensive too!
Instead, I used paprika and turmeric to give both flavor and color to the rice. After all that’s always been the natural coloring we use in Southeast Asia! The result is wonderful! Now, I can just reminisce about Barcelona whenever I eat it.
So whenever, I am having a craving for Paella but do not want to make such a huge fuss in the kitchen this is my easy go-to recipe. And everyone I’ve served this love this, too!
Is it hard to make this? Certainly not! The ingredients for one are easy to source and not super expensive if you compare to the Spanish version.
- organic chicken thighs (skin on)
- Salt and pepper
- Flour for dusting (use alternative flour if you want it completely gluten-free)
- olive oil
- onion and garlic
- spices like ground turmeric and paprika
- jasmine rice (uncooked)
- chicken stock
- plum tomatoes, petite diced
- frozen peas
- Red, yellow or orange sweet peppers
- Spanish Chorizo sausage, chopped
HOW TO MAKE IT!
Clear and easy to follow instructions are included below including some photos so you won’t get lost.
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4 organic chicken thighs (skin on)
Salt and pepper
Flour for dusting (use alternative flour if you want it completely gluten-free)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp Spanish paprika
1 tsp turmeric
1 ½ cups jasmine rice (uncooked)
3 cups chicken stock
2 plum tomatoes, petite diced
1 cup frozen peas
1-2 Red, yellow or orange sweet peppers, seeded and diced
4 oz Spanish Chorizo sausage, chopped
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper and then dust with flour.
Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or large skillet and then fry the chicken until golden brown on both sides. Transfer the chicken pieces to a baking tray (9 x13 baking dish) and into the oven for about 20 minutes.
While the chicken is cooking in the oven, prepare the accompanying vegetables.
Using the same pan where the chicken was cooked, sauté the onion and garlic and cook until the onions are soft, about 3-4 minutes. Add the paprika and turmeric. Stir-fry just until aromatic, less than a minute.
Add the uncooked rice and chicken stock and mix. Bring to a boil. When it begins to boil, turn off the heat. We will continue cooking it in the oven.
Remove the baking pan from oven. Distribute the rice mixture in the pan where the chicken is cooking. If it’s easier, simply remove the chicken pieces first then spoon the rice spreading it all over the pan then return the chicken pieces. Continue to cook in the oven for about 15 mins. The rice should be almost dry at this point.
As the rice and chicken is cooking, add a little oil to the dutch oven or skillet you used previously. Fry the chorizo until it changes its color.
Once the timer is done, take the baking pan out of the oven, then add the remaining ingredients (diced tomatoes, frozen peas
diced sweet peppers) and the fried chorizo, distributing them evenly all over the rice.
Return to the oven and bake for a further 10-15 minutes or just until the chicken is tender and the rice has fully absorbed the stock.
Serve with a wedge of lemon and squeeze on top of the rice just before eating, if desired.
Note: You may add the chorizo with the other ingredients (bell peppers, tomato, etc.) and let it cook in the oven. However, it may become slightly chewy though it does add more flavor to the rice done that way – it’s up to you.
Instead of cooking the chorizo with the chicken, you may (after adding the rest of the vegetables to the pan), heat a little oil and fry the chorizos until brown and crispy. Simply add at the end just before serving.