Today, we want to offer you the mixed Paella recipe of a great Spanish cook, Johana Rueda. We tested it, and we were dazzled, so much so that we prayed for weeks, but in the end, we managed to get the recipe. We don’t add anything else, and we leave the word to Mrs. Rueda.
I moved to Italy almost 20 years, and now this is my home, but my heart remains in Spain. Every year I come back to visit relatives and friends, and every time I am surprised by the differences I notice, not only over time, in character, but also taste. Now my palate has also turned to the “flavor of Italy.”
But the mixed Paella never changes. It’s the taste of when I was little, my Proustian biscuit if we want to put it this way. Today I want to offer you the mixed Paella recipe that has been prepared in my family for generations. It is not the classic Valencian Paella, but the mixed, rustic, and full of flavors and colors that recall my land. The one that is prepared in every house, for anniversaries, the one that my mother prepares me when I get home.
Ingredients for making the perfect Paella Mixta
For six hungry persons
- Rice 500 grams
- Clams 500 grams
- Shrimps 300 grams (use the heads for the broth)
- Mussels 350 grams
- Chicken wings or legs (a couple for person)
- Loin of pork 300 grams
- Chorizo 200 grams
- Fish or meat broth
- Peas 250 grams
- 1 onion, 2 ripe tomatoes, 1 red pepper, 1 green pepper
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Parsley and laurel
- Olive oil, salt, and pepper
- Sweet paprika
How to make the Paella Mixta
Put two tablespoons of olive oil in a hot pan, add the mariscos, a glass of white wine and cook them for 8-10 minutes until the shells are opened.
Cut the chicken, the chorizo, and the pork into medium pieces. Again three tablespoons of oil in the pan where we will prepare the Paella. Let the mashed garlic brown gently, but remember to throw it away before cooking the meat, or it’s going to cause some unwanted bitterness.
It’s crucial to stir-fry the meat to perfection: it must be crispy outside and juicy inside. The laurel should be put in only at the end for a touch of fragrance.
Put aside the meat and chop the onion, which will be sauteed for four minutes, then put inside the tomatoes, finely chopped and peeled, and let it go slowly, this is called sofrito in Spanish, and then add the peppers, which you will have previously sauteed with oil, salt and pepper and finally the peas.
Just a couple of minutes, and it’s time for the rice to get in with two cups of broth, in which the saffron must be completely dissolved, and the final touch: a small spoon of sweet paprika.
Don’t forget to use the broth of the previously cooked mariscos because that is the crucial ingredient for a great Paella.
Keep it on high heat for ten minutes until the rice is dry, then lower the heat and let cook for seven more minutes. When the rice is ready, empower it with mariscos and parsley, rest for a couple of minutes, and bring the Paella to the table.
Paella cooking tips
Color and consistency are crucial. The dish must be brilliant, all grains well shelled, the mariscos juicy. For this reason, you need to cook the ingredients separately to maintain them intact: you have to crunch a symphony of different textures in your mouth.
Rice. Buy the right one: Calasparra or Bomba, but also a simple Arborio is ok. The important thing is that it is not a Carnaroli: the grains must be thin. And above all, don’t cook it as it was a risotto: after the first ten minutes burst, you have to tone down the heat. It’s a shocking, not a slow, creamy kind of cooking. And on the bottom of the pan, iron pan, of course, there must be a golden caramelized crust.
Paella is an easy-going recipe, so don’t shell the mariscos nor season it with some exotic spices or herbs. I know someone uses cilantro, it is not that bad, but it has nothing to do with Paella. The flavors are simple, well defined, and wisely mingled for centuries. Accordingly, you should avoid frozen mariscos and choose top-notch ingredients. You don’t have to splurge on pounds of imperial shrimps…
The beauty of this recipe is that it’s possible to adjust it with what you have in your kitchen or match it with your mood: mine is a muy rica Spanish-Colombian version that sums up my experiences, and I’m sure that will not disappoint you!
Paella wine pairing guide: which wine shall we serve with Paella?
We have plenty of possibilities here: an intense flavor without particular problems. Hence our goal is to stress the delicate balance among the ingredients and provide a lot of freshness to keep the palate ready for the next bite. Chorizo, the most decadent flavor, doesn’t need such a powerful tannin; a breath of aromatic herbs in the wine too would be a good playmate for laurel and parsley, and finally, to harmonize the sweetness of mariscos and vegetables is required a fair amount of saltiness.
Lambrusco, Frappato, Montepulciano Cerasuolo, and all the outstanding pink wines from Apulia made of Negramaro and Malvasia Nera are natural pairings, but it would be as stealing candies from a baby: these wines have an incredible matching power. And it would be nice too if we could find a wine similar to Tempranillo, not a Gran Riserva of course, but Joven (young) wines or Crianza, little or no oaked, which can display a vibrant freshness of palate and bouquet with flowers and tart fruits like cherry and mulberry, to create a kingly match with Paella. Yes, we are still speaking about Sangiovese, in this case, the 2007 Chianti Viacosta Riserva, proudly earthy and classic, crossed by a thrilling acidity, with a candied cherry roundness that fit beautifully with the shrimps and a very elegant tannin for a final waltz with the chorizo.
But if we throw in the mix paprika and peppers too, we could give a shot to a more complex wine like the 2007 Carmignano Terre a Mano, a remarkable synthesis that has the airy potpourri of the Sangiovese with the addition of the zesty smoked suggestions of the Cabernet Sauvignon, ennobled by a stony terroir that gives a silky finesse to the tannins, making this wine the ultimate soul mate of the Paella.
If you prefer a cocktail, a simple sangria would be great.