The classic mussels and shrimp paella recipe has gained immense popularity over the years due to its versatility in terms of recipe modifications to suit individual taste preferences. Spaniards boast of having around three hundred recipes for this dish, but we suggest trying the most famous one – the classic paella with seafood, specifically with shrimp, squid, and mussels. You can also cook it it with chicken. This dish is a seafood lover’s paradise, with its combination of succulent prawns and mussels, coupled with flavorful spices and vegetables that provide an explosion of tastes and aromas.
- Water – 1.5 liters
- King prawns – 16 pcs.
- Garlic – 8 cloves
- Carrot – 1 pc.
- Leek – 1 head
- White wine – 100 ml.
- Saffron – 1 tbs.
- Olive oil – 5 tbs.
- Salt – 1 tsp. Ground black pepper – 1/2 tsp.
- Squid – 4 pc.
- Mussels – as desired
- Onion – 1 head
- Bell pepper – 3 pcs.
- Tomatoes – 2 pcs.
- Round-grain rice 400 g.
How to make mussels and shrimp paella recipe
Step 1. To prepare the classic paella with shrimp and mussels at home, follow the step-by-step recipe. The broth is the first thing to prepare, which involves peeling and grating a carrot on a coarse grater and cutting a leek. In a saucepan, heat olive oil and add garlic, carrot, and leek. Salt and pepper the mixture, add fish bones (cod fins and tail), and 8 prawn heads. Fry the ingredients, stirring constantly, for 1 minute, and then pour in white wine. Continue to stir and cook for another minute before adding water. Cook for 20 minutes, removing the foam that forms periodically. Remove the cod fins and tail, and strain the contents of the saucepan through a sieve. Fry the saffron in a dry frying pan, grind it in a mortar, and add it to the broth.
Step 2. Prepare the remaining ingredients, such as chopping onions into cubes, removing the stem and seeds from the bell pepper, and finely chopping garlic. Grind tomatoes with a blender or meat grinder and cut cleaned squid into rings.
Heat olive oil in a pan, add onions and fry them until soft. Add garlic, sweet pepper, and cook for 15-20 minutes over low heat. Add chopped tomatoes and cook for 5 more minutes. Add the squid, stir and after 2-3 minutes, add the rice. Mix well.
Step 3. Pour the broth into the pot with the rice, vegetables, and squid. Cook for 10 minutes over low heat. Add shrimp and mussels on top and cook for 3-5 minutes more. Remove the pot from the stove, cover with a lid, and let it rest for 15 minutes.
Step 4. To ensure a perfectly cooked paella, use a large, flat paella pan, or a large skillet as an alternative. Toast the saffron threads before adding them to the broth to release their flavor and aroma. When cooking vegetables, sauté them until they’re soft and lightly caramelized to add depth of flavor to the dish. To prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan, stir it gently but frequently while it cooks to distribute the heat evenly. Pour the broth slowly and evenly to help the rice cook evenly and absorb the broth properly. Let the rice rest for a few minutes before serving to allow the flavors to meld together and the rice to absorb any remaining broth. Garnish the paella with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice to add freshness and brightness to the dish.
In conclusion, the classic paella with shrimp and mussels is an excellent dish that seafood lovers would enjoy. The dish provides a multidimensional flavor and aroma that gourmets appreciate in paella. Serve it in the same dish it was cooked in or transfer it onto serving plates and offer your guests a glass of dry white wine that pairs perfectly with seafood.
Tips for mussels and shrimp paella recipe
- Cooking a delectable paella requires finesse and technique, and using a large, flat paella pan is paramount for even cooking. However, if you lack this specialized pan, a large skillet can suffice to produce a culinary masterpiece.
- For a symphony of flavors, toasting the saffron threads in a dry pan for a few minutes before adding them to the broth will facilitate the release of their savory aroma. The addition of these threads can make or break the dish, and their preparation should not be taken lightly.
- When cooking the vegetables, it’s crucial to sauté them until they’re soft and delicately caramelized, as this will elevate the dish’s depth of flavor. As you add the rice to the pan, remember to stir it gently but frequently, to ensure that it doesn’t stick to the bottom and cooks evenly. This will require precision, as you want to distribute the heat uniformly and allow the rice to cook to perfection.
- While adding the broth, it’s important to pour it in slowly and evenly to ensure that the rice absorbs it thoroughly, allowing for even cooking and optimal flavor distribution. Once the rice has cooked to perfection, let it rest for a few minutes before serving, allowing the flavors to meld together and the rice to absorb any remaining broth.
- For the final touch, garnish the paella with a sprig of fresh herbs, such as parsley or cilantro, and a squeeze of tangy lemon juice. This infusion of freshness and brightness will make your paella an irresistible culinary masterpiece, sure to delight your taste buds.
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