Our family make sure to cook paella during the holidays. This delicious seafood paella was prepared by my wife, Dey. I know that sometimes pictures might be intimidating, but we are confident that with a little practice and having all the ingredients available, you too can create this gastronomic masterpiece.
This seafood paella was served during New Year’s eve along with lechon belly, steamed lobster, morcon, seared bacon wrapped scallops, pancit, and “bibingkang malagkit”. My family likes to cook and eat special dishes during this time because we believe that doing so will bring us happiness, prosperity, and more love in the year to come — of course, enjoying these delicious dishes is the icing on the cake.
I must say that I really love seafood paella with Chardonnay. I think that these two make a perfect pair. Having the entire family around to share our blessings is priceless. I just hope that it will always be this way every year.
How to Cook Seafood Paella
Here is how this yummy seafood paella was made. The first thing that you need to do is prepare the paste. I am talking about the garlic, parsley, and paprika mixture. These are key ingredients because it helps a lot to make the dish taste and look better. Once you have this ready, it’s time to cook.
We will need to partially cook the shrimp and squid with oil in order for the oil to absorb the flavor from these ingredient. Simple heat the remaining olive oil in your paella pan and pan fry the shrimp and squid quickly. Remove the seafood once done and set these aside.
Next is to saute the onion and tomato until it gets soft. The green peas gets added after this step along with the garlic and parsley mixture that you prepared initially. I also add the clam juice and water right away and let the entire mixture boil. The clam juice can be purchased in the supermarket. It is usually in the seafood aisle along area where the canned fish are located. These are usually packaged in bottles.
When the mixture starts to boil, this is your indicator to add the saffron and rice. Saffron is a very important ingredient for paella. It will be worth every penny that you spent. I suggest using the best quality saffron that you can get. You will save money if you buy in bulk. Unlike other ingredients, for saffron I consider 1 ounce to be a bulk because of the price. As for the rice, Calasparra rice is what I prefer.
Once the rice in place, cover the pan and cook until the rice gets partially cooked. Arrange the shrimp, squid, clams, and mussels on top. Cover to let the rice cook completely. Arrange the lemon wedges and you are done with your masterpiece. You might also want to see our other seafood paella recipe known as Paella Marinera.
As I’ve mentioned, a little practice is all that it takes for anyone who wants to be proficient in something. In this case, you might wing it during your first try or you may not. What’s important is that you know what to adjust so that it will be better next time.
Try this Seafood Paella Recipe. Enjoy!
- 2 cups paella rice
- 13 pieces cooked little-neck clams
- 13 pieces large tiger shrimp
- 13 pieces cooked mussels
- 1 large squid, sliced into rings
- 16 ounces clam juice
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- 1 medium tomato, diced
- 1 cup green peas
- 1½ teaspoons saffron
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 small red bell pepper, roasted and sliced into strips
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1½ tablespoons garlic paste
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 pieces lemon, sliced into wedges
- Arrange parsley in a mortar. Gently pound using the pestle and grind until the texture becomes smooth similar to a paste.
- Combine the parsley, salt, garlic paste, paprika, and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a bowl. Place the mixture in a mortar and then grind using a pestle (mortar and pestle is also known as almires or dikdikan) until the mixture turns into a paste. Set aside.
- Heat the pan. Pour the remaining olive oil on the paellera or pan.
- Fry the tiger shrimp and shrimp for 1 minute per side. Remove the shrimp and squid and put in a plate.
- On the same pan with the remaining oil, saute onion and tomato.
- Add the green peas and mixture with parsley and garlic.. Stir.
- Pour-in water and clam juice. Let boil.
- Add the saffron and paella rice. Cover and adjust the heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes.
- Arrange clams, mussels, shrimp, squid, and roasted bell pepper.Cover and continue to cook for 8 minutes or until the rice is done. You can add more water if needed.
- Arrange the lemon wedges on the side.
- Serve. Share and enjoy!