The Non-National Dish of Spain

“So what are we having for dinner tonight?” – Ranting Son #2

“Paella” – The Ranting Chef

“What’s that?” – RS2

“The national dish of Spain.” – RC

– several days later –

“Did you make anything interesting over the weekend?” – Co-worker

“Paella” – The Ranting Chef

“What’s that?” – C

“The national dish of Spain.” – RC

Um…to any Spaniards out there….I may have been wrong. Paella, while very popular in various regions of Spain, really got its start in Valencia and is considered a dish from that region.

Photo Apr 06, 5 13 50 PM

Paella is a hearty dish made of rice and often includes land animals (rabbit, chicken) and/or seafood. Mine included chicken, chorizo, shrimp, scallops (a variation from the recipe below) and the delicious pancetta.

Photo Apr 06, 4 12 12 PM

I could not find bomba rice which is more traditional to paella so I used the arborito rice I had.

Photo Apr 06, 4 32 02 PM

Frying up the pork.

Photo Apr 06, 4 37 03 PM

With the onions.

Photo Apr 06, 4 41 42 PM

Getting the sauce together.

Photo Apr 06, 4 42 55 PM

In the pan.

Photo Apr 06, 5 01 55 PM

The seafood has been added.

Photo Apr 06, 5 03 21 PM

The chicken has been roasted.

Photo Apr 06, 5 13 34 PM

Doesn’t that look beautiful?

Photo Apr 06, 5 13 39 PM



Makes: (Serves 4-6)


  • • boneless chicken thighs and drumsticks, one of each for each person
  • • 100g (1/3 lb) chorizo, sliced
  • • 6 slices pancetta or streaky bacon, chopped
  • • 500g (2.1 cups) paella rice
  • • 2 litres (8 1/2 cups) hot chicken stock
  • • 2 handfuls peas, fresh or frozen
  • • 10 king prawns
  • • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • • 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • • 2 large pinches of saffron or turmeric
  • • 1 heaped teaspoon smoked paprika
  • • olive oil
  • • plain flour, for dusting
  • • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • • small bunch flat leaf parsley, leaves picked and chopped, stalks chopped
  • • 500g (2 cups) mussels, scrubbed (optional)
  • • 2 small squid, halved and scored (optional)


1. Preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5. Season the chicken pieces and dust with flour. Heat a little olive oil in a large deep pan and fry the chicken until golden brown on both sides. Place the pieces on a baking tray and into the oven for 30 minutes.
2. Put the pan back on the heat. Add the sliced chorizo and pancetta or bacon and fry until browned and crispy. Then add the onion and garlic and cook until soft. Meanwhile, infuse half the hot chicken stock with the saffron/turmeric. Add the smoked paprika, rice and infused stock and leave to cook on a medium heat, stirring from time to time.
3. After 20 minutes the rice should be nearly cooked. At this point, pour in the rest of the stock along with the peas, prawns, and the mussels and squid, if you are using them. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 10 minutes more.
4. Finally, add the cooked chicken and serve sprinkled with chopped parsley and a wedge of lemon.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Chicken, Main Dish 3, Pork2, Recipes, Seafood, Spanish

Author:The Ranting Chef

Check out the best recipes at

5 Comments on “The Non-National Dish of Spain”

  1. January 16, 2014 at 11:06 am #

    Merci – this looks absolutely scrumptious – I’ll have to try this out!


  2. January 16, 2014 at 11:27 am #

    It does look beautiful!


  3. January 16, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

    SO beautiful. I had some lovely paella in Valencia with snails, chorizo and rabbit that I’d love to replicate.


  4. January 17, 2014 at 2:28 am #

    Oh, I could just wolf down a plate of that for breakfast! How delicious, thanks for providing me with a feast that won’t go to my hips for once…


  5. March 14, 2014 at 5:22 am #

    Reblogged this on This & That! and commented:
    So its Friday and that’s like Sunday here so it means we’re cooking a big family meal! Thanks to this wonderful Paella I found its a happy Friday!! Re-blogging this one from the rantingchef! A Must try!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: