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Cooking Paella Basic Principles

Paella is the generic name for 200+ rice dishes originating in Valencia, Spain. So as yo can imagine there are thousands of recipes out there all with do’s and don’ts attached to them from home cooks to celebrity chefs but there are some basic principles that need to be followed to create a beautiful Paella.
Basic Principles
  • Remember it’s a rice dish - The idea is to get all the flavour from the stock and accompanying ingredients in to the rice. You know you’ve made a good paella when you guest finish the rice and you have other ingredients left over
  • Use the right rice - As this is a rice dish it is important to get the main ingredient right. Paella uses a ‘short' grain rice typically the Bahia variety from south and south eastern Spain with the best rice coming from the home of Paella in Valencia these varieties typically absorb 2x their volume. If you want to go to the next level find some Bomba paella rice, usually way more expensive but will hold 3x it’s volume for that flavour packed bomb.
  • Use the correct size pan - It is important not to create a paella that is to deep, the rice needs to be of a dry consistence once cooked, a pan to deep won’t allow this process to occur. so work out how many people you are catering for, allowing for those who will have seconds, and find the right size pan. Here’s a guide to help.
  • Use the appropriate heat source - For the best result we recommend using an open fie or a gas burner or hob (for the small pans). The paella pan was designed to be place on an open fire and some of the biggest paellas cooked today can only be done using this method. Now days there are a range of specialty gas burners and stands that give the perfect result, depending on the size of the occasion will dictate what you need. Here’s a guide to help.
If you have any questions feel free to Ask Mr.Chop!