Lesley's Paella

Lovely Meal

I really love this dish - it is so tasty, and can be adapted to the ingredients you have to hand. Some people just use chicken, others only fish, and still others like me a mixture of both.

I got the basic recipe from Lesley, a lady who cared for my mum in the last years of her life. Lesley lived in Spain at the time, and would hop on  a plane every 2 weeks to come and look after mum 24/7. I asked her for the recipe after she mentioned that she did a mean paella every so often out in Spain for family and friends.

I think you'll agree this is pretty damn good. Thank you, Lesley, for everything!


Preparation Time:  15 Minutes
Cooking Time:  25 minutes

1/2 lb chicken fillet 1 medium onion, chopped
12 fresh clams or mussels 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 spicy sausage, chopped 1 red pepper, cut into strips lengthwise
Couple of pepperoni slices. chopped 1 cup arborio or paella rice
1/2 lb cooked lobster meat/prawns or cooked firm white fish, such as monkfish 1 chicken stock cube
1 tblsp tomato puree 1 tblsp saffron powder
1 tblsp paprika 1 teasp sugar
1/2 cup white wine 1 cup water
2 small corn on the cob, cooked and cut into thick slices, or cooked green beans

Heat a little olive oil in a very large frying pan, or a paella pan if you have one. Gently fry the red pepper strips and set to one side - they'll be used to decorate the top of the dish when it is coooked.

Fry the chopped chicken pieces and onion until just cooked. Add the pepperoni and sweat so that the oil comes out of the meat. Add the rice and turn so that all the rice is coated with oil. Add all the other ingredients apart from the lobster/monkfish, and cook gently, stirring constantly. Keep adding more liquid, water or wine - doesn't matter - until the rice is just 'al dente' i.e. with a slight bite, rather than cooked to a mush.

Add the cooked lobster meat and sweetcorn or green beans to the dish to heat through. Lay the red pepper strips over and serve at once with a robust red wine.