This recipe was adapted by mediterrasian.com.
1 wide shallow pan
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 red pepper, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons of flat-leaf parsley
2 vine ripened tomatoes, or a can of crushed tomatoes
1 lb of fresh seafood of your choice (I bought a mix of frozen seafood from the market)
Extra Virgin Olive oil
2 teaspoons paprika, or smoked paprika (I only had paprika on hand)
1.5 cups of medium grain rice (I used brown basmati rice)
3 cups Chicken Stock
Saffron Threads, or a saffron seasoning mixture by Goya
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup peas, frozen worked fine
Lemon wedges, optional
1 Finely chop red onion, red pepper, garlic cloves and parsley.
2 Puree 2 tomatoes using a box grater, leaving the skin behind. You can also use a can of crushed tomatoes.
3 Clean your seafood so it will be ready for cooking. Cover and refrigerate until it is time to cook.
4 This step makes the sofrito, a tomato and onion sauce that smells amazing. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and cook the red onion, parsley and 3 of the 4 garlic cloves until softened. Add the pureed tomatoes and 2 teaspoons paprika. Cook until all liquid has evaporated and it has the consistency of a jam.
5 Transfer the sofrito to a small bowl and wipe your pan clean.
6 Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and add your seafood mixture (shrimp, calamari, mussels, squid, etc.) and cook, tossing continuously for even cooking. Add the 1 chopped garlic. Remove the seafood and transfer to a small bowl, season with salt and pepper and cover.
7 Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat and cook red peppers until softened.
8 Add the sofrito back to the pan along with the 1.5 cups rice (uncooked) and stir to coat the grains.
9 Add 3 cups of heated chicken stock, a pinch of saffron, sea salt, and pepper.
10 Stir to combine and bring to a rolling simmer. Cook uncovered for 10 minutes. You will have to move the pan around the stove burner for even cooking.
11 Lower the heat and cook for another 15 minutes. Then, turn up the heat to medium to toast the bottom of the rice (the toasted rice bottom is called socorrat)
12 Lastly, add the seafood and push into rice mixture, scatter half a cup of peas and cover for 5 minutes to rest.
I used brown basmati rice for this paella and had to cook it longer than the recipe called for and increase the amount of chicken stock because brown rice takes longer to cook. Now that Ive had it both ways, regular white rice and brown rice, I can safely say that I couldn't tell the difference! I swear. So for a healthier route, try it with brown rice and cook a good 20 minutes longer. You will have to keep an eye on it and make sure it doesn't overcook. Also, this recipe called for green peppers, but Im not a fan so I left it out.