Chicken and Shrimp Paella



Our first saffron dish! I have been wanting to cook something with saffron forever now and bought some at Trader Joe's a couple of months ago. We finally found a dish that seemed worthy of the expensive as gold spice. That arborio rice sure is expensive too - anyone know where to get it on the cheap?

A bit about saffron: it really is the world's most expensive spice. The saffron plant has these really pretty purple flowers - and one pound of saffron takes 50,000-75,000 of them! The golden-yellow hue that appears in dishes containing saffron is due to a natural die it has. It reportedly has some medicinal properties as well. Sounds like an all-around winner to me!

The dish is a very tasty, healthy paella. I must say, the chicken is not as flavorful as it could be though. If we make it again, we will likely season it as we cook it our just double the shrimp and leave the chicken out all together (most likely). Or perhaps even add additional seafood like mussels or squid. The original recipe is from Eating Well and called for smoked mussels, which we decided to omit and change some other ingredients around.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 8 ounces medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 and 1/2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 16 oz), trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch-thick strips
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15-ounce can tomatoes (with juice)
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1 4 oz jar artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/3 cup bottled roasted red pepper (about two large pieces), cut into strips

Directions

  1. Combine broth and saffron in a small saucepan; bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add shrimp and sauté until pink and curled, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  3. Add 1 teaspoon oil to the pan. Add chicken and sauté until lightly browned on the outside and opaque inside, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the pan.
  4. Season the shrimp and chicken with salt and pepper and set aside.
  5. Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil to the skillet. Add onions and garlic; sauté until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. (Add 1 to 2 tablespoons water if they become too dry.)
  6. Stir in tomatoes and crushed red pepper; simmer, uncovered, for 3 minutes, breaking up tomatoes with a wooden spoon.
  7. Add rice and stir to coat well with the tomato mixture. Stir in the reserved chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat for 20 minutes.
  8. Gently stir artichoke hearts, peas, roasted red peppers, and the reserved shrimp and chicken into the rice mixture.
  9. Cover and cook until the rice is tender and the shrimp and chicken are heated through, 5 to 10 minutes longer. (Stir occasionally to prevent scorching, if necessary.) Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

26 comments:

Christina @ Bon Appetit Beantown said...

I studied abroad in Seville, Spain back in college and fell in love with paella - I'll be adding this recipe to my menu very soon :)

Gloria said...

Chef fresco this is a georgeous and tasty Paella, I love it and your picture absolutely wonderful, great work!! cheers, gloria

grace said...

artichoke hearts, eh? nifty. i'll tell ya what i'd like to see in this--sausage. chicken and sausage. it's a lovely dish as it is, though--nice work. :)

sophia said...

Oh gosh. Look at the colors in that thing...I can almost see the lovely steam rising! And a bread to mop up all the precious juices!

Chef E said...

Oh how you make me long for my Portuguese restaurant up north of my NJ home! I did however have all you can eat shrimps here in Geog'a, okay, GA, and it is good to be so close to home and have that fresh shrimp!

Sandi said...

that looks wonderful....I love paella....and it looks real easy to make as well.

petite nyonya said...

This looks deliciously good!!

tasteofbeirut said...

Yum! Love paella especially a streamlined version that delivers the same results and flavors!

Kevin said...

That looks really good! I like the use of the artichoke hearts as I have really been into them lately.

Kerstin said...

I tend to hoard saffron and then I end up not using it! This looks like the perfect use for it :)

Leslie said...

OMG..your 1st saffron dish??? you will be hooked!

Esi said...

Welcome to the saffron club! It's great company to be in :)

Ivy said...

I am glad that you have started experimenting with saffron. Isn't it just wonderful? I've used it in risotto many times but never thought of making paella. Your recipe sounds delicious.

Conor @ HoldtheBeef said...

Yay! Saffron! I've never made my own paella, and I think I'd like to do a squid ink version one day but this colour is just so gorgeous. Worth the expense? Yeah, I think so :)

Barbara said...

Nice paella! I think dark chicken meat has a little more flavor than white meat...
Love you got to use your saffron so effectively.

Hornsfan said...

Looks great - I still haven't been able to use the small bit of saffron in my pantry, maybe this is the dish to use it with :)

lisaiscooking said...

Great use of saffron! I don't use it often, but I do love saffron with seafood. Sounds delicious!

Juliana said...

Chef Fresco, love the idea of combining chicken and shrimp...your version of paella looks delicious, sure makes a great meal :-)

Shannon said...

you know, i have finally got some saffron and haven't used it, either! paella might be the perfect dish to use it with though, i'll have to get on it :)

gastroanthropologist said...

Looks delicious! I haven't cooked a paella in such a long time - I too like it with lots of seafood. I like the addition of the artichoke hearts.

Catherine said...

Simply scumptious! You have a very nice site over here!

Xiao Yen Recipes said...

I've only tried Indian briyani rice with saffron and have never tried any other rice dish using saffron. This is such a creative dish and it looks gorgeous.

Cherine said...

Awesome paella, looks delicious with the addition of artichoke hearts!!

Dee said...

Mmm, I need to drag my paella pan out & make this soon. I love the artichokes, how wonderful. thanks for stopping by & yes, it has been a while. Have a great weekend.

Olga @ MangoTomato said...

I went to Spain in April, and to be completely honest, your paella looks way better than anything I've seen there!

Trissa said...

Yes saffron is so horribly expensive but really worth it - just lifts the dish - your paella looks truly authentic!

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