Paella_014If you happen to be a big fan of Spanish cuisine (and who isn’t?) then you probably know that there’s nothing like enjoying delicious paella with family and friends. For those of you who have never heard of “paella” (pronounced pa-EH-ya), it’s a saffron rice dish made with a combination of meats and seafood. Go ahead, do a Google image search of paella and check it out for yourself. You won’t be disappointed.

This divine dish has become increasingly popular (and trendy) and is the new hot dish to make at home. It may look complicated, but believe it or not, it ‘s simpler than you think. It all boils down to the quality of ingredients and what meats you choose to make it with.  Paella Valenciana, for example, is strictly a seafood paella, but it’s completely up to you and how you want it to taste.

If we break down the paella recipe you’ll see that you’re essentially mixing uncooked rice with an oil, spreading it onto a large flat paella pan, like the one from IMUSA, and slowly adding water or stock to it. Eventually you mix in cooked meats (like chicken, sausage and beef) or uncooked seafood (as they take a relatively short amount of time to cook. Slowly continue adding the liquid without mixing, and eventually when it all evaporates it’s ready to be served!

So where do we begin? The first step is to own a paella pan. One that will last a lifetime and you can proudly display in your kitchen to your friends. IMUSA offers a variety of authenticly designed paella pans that fit on your stovetop. Once the paella pan is yours, you’re ready to create masterpieces like my Smoky Tomato Paella. It’s flavored with saffron and paprika and the best part is the spicy chorizo and tomatoes that will amaze your friends and family.

Your imagination is your only limit when it comes to paella. In fact, one time I made a hotdog paella for a kids party and I can’t tell you how much of a hit that was. Imagine your favorite meat and incorporate it into this Spanish dish. Better yet, see what’s fresh at your fishmonger and you’re guaranteed a seafood success.

If you’re wondering how you’re going to wow your guests at your next dinner party, bring out a colorful paella and watch their amazement! They’ll think you labored all day long to create this authentic dish, but only you (and I) know how ridiculously easy and fun it was to make!

Buen Provecho!

Check out George’s Paella Recipes Here:

Smokey-Tomato Paella:

Chorizo Seafood Paella:

By: George Duran