This is a great one “Pot” classic Spanish dish that originated in Valencia, although they are numerous versions throughout Spain. As a general rule the nearer the coast the more seafood is used whilst further inland they feature meat such as rabbit and chicken. In this recipe the Catalan Pesto can be used as a Sofrito. Traditionally it is cooked in a shallow cast-iron pan, cooked outside over a boxwood fire. The pan can be picked up very cheaply in Spain so pick one up the next time you’re on holiday!


Serves 2


1 litre (1 1/2 pints) hot chicken stock

3 tbsp olive oil

4 skinless and boneless chicken thighs or breast fillets, each cut into eight pieces

8 whole raw king prawns

20 large clams and  or mussels, cleaned

2 garlic clove, finely chopped

4 tbsp Catalan World Pesto

2 Bay Leafs

200g (7oz) Spanish short grain rice (Calasparra, La Bomba or Paella Rice )

Good pinch saffron strands, soaked in a little white wine or water

8 small cherry tomatoes

½ Rep Bell Pepper cut in batons

1x15oz tin of whole tomatoes chopped

100g (4oz) Petit Pois (fresh or frozen)

1 Lemon Quartered

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Lightly dressed rocket salad and crusty bread, to serve


Heat some olive oil in a paella pan, add the chicken and sauté for 1-2 minutes until sealed and lightly golden (remove from pan and set aside)

Sauté the chopped onion until slightly caramelised .Add the Rice ,chorizo and sauté for 2 mins then add the garlic & Catalan World Pesto and sauté for another few minutes.  Add back the chicken and the saffron liquid , Bay leafs, tomato and pour in the stock – it should come to the level of the rice.

Add the prawns to the pan along with the clams and or mussels and red peppers.

Ensure ingredients in pan are covered with stock but no more.

Scatter over the cherry tomatoes and season to taste. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes or until the rice is completely tender and all of the liquid has been absorbed. Sprinkle with the Petit Pois, garnish with the lemon wedges & Serve the paella in the pan on to the table with a bowl of rocket salad and a basket of crusty bread.

  • The word paella comes from the name of the pan it is made in – the Latin term patella, a flat plate on which offerings were made to the Gods.
  • Vegetarian Version; Veg stock instead of chicken substitute white beans, Eggplant, Artichokes & Piquillo peppers for the fish and chicken


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