By Chef Todd

Why There's No ONE Authentic Paella Recipe

There is no ONE authentic paella recipe. Every region of Spain has their own interpretation of this dish, which means YOU can have your own version as well.

I’ve been traveling throughout Spain to explore and discover Spanish foods that are new to me. I’m not trying to find recipes, they only teach you how to cook ONE thing.

I’m in search of new ingredients that I can apply the cooking methods that I already use in my own kitchen. The idea is not to change HOW I cook, but search for a new WHAT to cook.

That’s why there is no singular authentic paella recipe. Paella is more of a cooking METHOD that can accept the ingredients YOU desire.

You might want shrimp, clams, and mussels. You’ve then made Paella Mariscos.
Use tomato, onion, garlic and rabbit and you have Paella Valencia.
Go ahead and use ALL ingredients you can think of and create Paella Mixta.

Or, you can invent the combination of ingredients to make your OWN original paella recipe.

Here’s the basic procedure for making the authentic paella recipe for YOUR kitchen:

  • Heat a large flat pan until water evaporates quickly.
  • Add a good quality olive oil and wait until it starts to look streaky.
  • Saute’ your protein products like chicken, shrimp, or sausage.
  • Add RAW short-grain rice like Bomba rice or Arborio rice.
  • Add aromatics like onion, garlic, peppers or tomatoes
  • Deglaze the pan with a flavorful stock, using twice the quantity as rice.
  • Add any delicate proteins like shrimp, clams or mussels to cook in the moisture.
  • Cover and simmer on low heat until the rice absorbs the liquid.

Ole’! You’ve made your OWN chicken or beef or lamb or pork or tofu or vegetable paella!

Even though I watched an experienced paella chef make his paella recipe in today’s video, I still realize that it’s up to ME to follow his method but use the ingredients I want in my own paella dish.

It’s another example of how cooking METHODS, the HOW to cook, always gives you power over the ingredients, the WHAT to cook. This is when cooking is liberating and FUN!

Paella is an obvious choice for studying Spanish food, but there are so many more flavors and ingredients I discovered there.

Join me for my next FREE online webinar workshop, "International Food Finds: Discover Global Inspirations For New And Exciting Meals At Home"