Easy Paella with Chicken, Chorizo and Prawns
Just the perfect dish for the first day of proper spring. This is my uptake on the Spanish dish. Everybody loves the delicious and spicy paella with chicken, peppers and tomatoes - like a summer holiday evening. I always add frozen peas to my paella, but they can be left out. And as it does not need the stirring like a risotto it is much more relaxed to prepare it.
Ingredients for 4:
1 tablespoon olive oil,
100g chorizo, thinly sliced,
1 onion, finely chopped,
1 red or yellow pepper, deseeded and sliced,
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped,
150g vine-tomatoes, chopped,
a pinch of saffron,
2 teaspoons smoked paprika,
325g long-grain rice,
650ml chicken or vegetable stock + 500ml hot water,
8 chicken drumsticks or 4 thighs, baked in the oven separately, or
2 chicken breast, sliced and fried in a little olive oil with some salt, pepper and smoked paprika,
250g king prawns,
4 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped,
2 lemons, cut into wedges, to serve and a mixed salad as a side(optional).
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Season the chicken drumsticks/thighs with salt, pepper, sweet paprika and smoked paprika. Place them in a roasting tin and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until nicely browned and cooked through. If using chicken breast, cut the breasts into small strips, season with salt, pepper, sweet paprika and smoked paprika. Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium high heat and stir-fry the pieces for about 7 minutes until just done. Set aside.
2. Meanwhile, put the saffron in a cup and add 3 tablespoons of boiling water to it, leave to infuse for a few minutes. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook for a few minutes until softened but not coloured. Add the chorizo and fry for 5 minutes until the fat is rendering. Add the garlic and the pepper and fry for a minute longer.
3. Add the rice, stir until the rice is coated with the fat and becomes slightly translucent. That takes a few minutes. Then add the stock, 500ml of water and the saffron. Make sure to rinse the cup with the hot water to get all the saffron out into the paella! Bring to a simmer and season well with salt, pepper and the smoked paprika. Cook for 10 minutes, do not stir during that time.
4. Add the chicken (if fried in a pan) and the tomatoes on top and do not be tempted to stir them in yet, just let them lie on top and cook for further 5 minutes.
5. Do the same with the frozen peas (if using) and let them defrost and warm up on top of the rice and cook for further 5 minutes. Then stir in the peas and place the prawns on top.
6. Just before the rice is just tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed stir the prawns into the paella and adjust seasoning Switch off the heat, put a lid on the pan and leave to stand for 5 minutes until the liquid is absorbed. Give it a final stir, garnish with the parsley and the chicken drumsticks/thighs should you use them. Serve with lemon wedges and a mixed salad on the side.