Paella de Dominique

Main Dish
8 servings
90 min
90 min
Today, Paella is found on the menus of the higher priced restaurants and a serving can command a price tag of $18 to $30. What is ironic is that it was traditionally a peasant dish that consisted of various ingredients that were available in the area and could even include left over items. In Spain the variations of the dish were and still are influenced by where it's made. The regions where there is pork and chicken will feature those meats prominently. If there is an abundance of lamb or rabbit, those items will be included. They all have 3 things in common however, they all include rice, saffron, and some type of protein, be it seafood, fowl, meat, or a combination.


Number of serving: 8
5 Boneless and skinless chicken thighs, cut in quarters

1 lb of pork, cut in 1 inch pieces (does not have to be an expensive cut)

3 links of Chorizo saussage, cut in 1/2 inch slices (ask your butcher)

24 fresh clams in their shells

18 fresh mussels in their shells

1/2 lb of sea scallops, cut in half

1/2 lb of unshelled medium sized shrimp

Optional - 6 crab legs or claws or 6 to 8 jumbo prawns unshelled and heads on

1 medium red bell pepper, chopped

2 medium red tomatoes, seeded and chopped

2 medium yellow onions, chopped

6 cloves of garlic, chopped

1/2 cup of pitted green olives (ok they're fruit) cut in halves

1/2 cup of pitted black olives cut in halves

1 cup of thawed frozen baby peas (or green beans, cut and parboiled)

1 cup of garbanzo beans (this is unique to my recipe and have found that it works)

1/4 cup of chopped parsley

3 cups of rice (either Bomba or Calasparra)

6 cups of chicken broth

1/2 cup of dry white wine

1/4 cup of olive oil

3 tablespoons of anise liquor (Pernod, Ricard, or Uozo)

1/4 teaspoon of Spanish smoked paprika

1 teaspoon of saffron threads

3 tablespoons of pimientos

6 to 8 lemon wedges (for garnish)


A good 16 to 20 inch paella pan 2 to 3 inches deep


  • Before you start cooking, make sure that all your prep work is done. This includes chopping, slicing, and the following. Shell the shrimp, leaving the tails on. Put the shells in a medium size pot and add the chicken broth. Bring broth to a boil, lower heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove the shells and discard. Add the saffron and paprika to the broth, cover pot, and keep on warm heat, but do not boil or simmer, just keep it warm. Preheat your oven to 325.
  • Pour the olive oil in your paella pan and heat oil on high. Saute your chicken and pork until golden brown. Remove from heat and set on a platter. Cover to keep warm. Now saute your chorizo on medium high for about 5 minutes. Add your onions, peppers, and garlic, and saute until onions get translucent. Now add your shrimp and saute for about 2 minutes. Remove the shrimp and put them in the platter with the chicken and pork. Stir the onions and peppers and add the anise liquor, then the white wine to deglaze. Now add the rice and stir well so rice is nicely coated. Next, add the chicken broth to the rice and stir well. Add the parsley, garbanzo beans, peas, olives, tomato, and pimientos and stir well. Bring to a boil and cook uncovered for 10 minutes over medium high heat. Stir on occasion so rice doesn't stick to bottom of pan.
  • Now add the chicken and pork back to the pan, bury the scallops and shrimp in the rice, place the mussels and clams into the rice face up, and place in the oven uncovered. Cook in the oven for about 20 minutes, checking after about 15 minutes to make sure rice is nearly done. You want it to be al dente at that point, not crunchy. If you feel you need a little moisture, you may add 1/4 cup of stock, but it's doubtful you will need to. After 20 minutes, remove from oven and let set on stove top loosely covered with foil for about 15 minutes.
  • You have just made your first Paella! This recipe should serve about 8 of you with some left over for seconds. Garnish the edges of the pan with the lemon wedges and a bit more parsley sprinkled over the top. This dish is well accompanied with a nice pitcher of chilled red Sangria. To prepare the Sangria, add 3 parts red wine, 1 part 7 UP, 1 part orange juice, 2 oranges cut in eighths, 2 lemons cut in eighths. Stir, refrigerate for about an hour. Finish dinner with some sliced pineapple and a shot of 43 served in a brandy snifter. Enjoy your fabulous dinner !!


This is truly a wonderful dish. Paella is not difficult to make; however, it is time consuming because of everything that goes in it. And once you see your guest's faces when you present it, the time it took is all worth it. A few things to keep in mind...

1. Avoid using a non stick paella pan, as this won't give the rice socarrat texture on the bottom when it's cooking. The socarrat in paella is one of the most important keys for fabulous flavor. The socarrat is the crusty crispy bottom of the paella that becomes caramelized and toasted on the bottom of the pan when it is cooking. You will get this effect during final cooking in the oven or if choosing to finish cooking on the stovetop. Allow the moisture to completely evaporate and you will get that caramelized effect. That's about the only "tricky" part about making paella.

2. If you have a smaller paella pan (12 to 14 inches), simply reduce the amount of the ingredients. Reduce your ingredients by half or there abouts.

3. Please stick with the type of rice suggested! Stay away from long grain or quick cook rice, as it will certainly get overcooked and soggy by the time the paella is done... BELIEVE ME ! :)


Paella de Dominique, photo 1
Paella de Dominique, photo 2


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