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Traditional Spanish Paella: How to Cook and Eat Authentic Paella

Traditional Spanish paella in paella pan rabbit meat, rice, green beans, and more.One thing you may notice that differs across various sellers and makers of paella is just how they cook and serve it to be eaten. While there is a traditional way to do so, ways may differ slightly across even different parts of Spain. Traditional Spanish paella preparation and serving methods are not as simple as grabbing a plate and digging in. Here at Machika, we want to go over a traditional Spanish Paella recipe and discuss how you would serve and eat this type of paella in the past. Traditions are important for connecting people to cultures and experiences they may not be familiar with. With no traditions or background history on the recipe you make, you miss out on vital parts of it. The experience is much better when you know the story and practices that your recipe is built on.

History of Traditional Spanish Paella

Paella has a long history throughout multiple cultures and regions of the world. Many researchers believe it was originally a type of single pan dish from areas of the Middle East and was brought to Spain by Muslim traders. They brough more than the idea of the recipe, though. Moors also brought with them their agricultural practices and staples like short grain rice! This changed the foods, cooking practices, and recipes of the region overtime. Eventually, rice became a staple food in Spain and was grown in many regions. Naturally, this made it perfect for paella’s popularity.

Simple and Easy Traditional Spanish Paella Recipe

Making traditional paella does not need to be a hard process. After all, cooking paella is a rather simple task. The fact all the ingredients are cooked in the same pan makes it easier to keep track of what you are cooking. You do not need to worry about multiple pans or pots that have different cooking times. Instead, just add your ingredients in the right order and let cook until the rice absorbs the liquid and forms a nice crispy bottom layer. Here is an example of the traditional Spanish paella one may come across when looking up recipes! The meat ingredients can be difficult to come by, but many online sellers provide more exotic meats that you may not find in a local grocery store like rabbit. Without further wait, here is our spin on traditional Spanish Paella recipes.

Machika Traditional Spanish Paella Ingredients

This paella recipe uniquely calls for rabbit meat. Earlier paella recipes also included meats like snails. However, most modern traditional paella recipes do not include snails. Instead, the dish also includes full bone in chicken drumsticks. You can also use a whole chicken and divide it into cuts with the bones in. The bones provide a lot of additional flavor and add to the delicious stickiness of the dish. Nothing is less appetizing than a water and un-flavorful paella. All the ingredients for our Machika traditional paella are as follows:

  • 4 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 pounds of chicken thighs and drumsticks (bone in)
  • 2 pounds of rabbit meat
  • 1 - 2 grams of saffron
  • 4 cups of short grain paella rice (bomba rice)
  • 16 oz bag of frozen green peas
  • 2 tomatoes (diced)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • About 5 cups of water
  • 5 teaspoons of paprika
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

Paella Cooking Instructions

Rabbit meat for traditional paella cooking in paella pan

Cooking this traditional paella recipe is as simple as the ingredients.

  1. You first want to take 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and add your garlic, rabbit meat, and pieces of chicken thigh and drumsticks.
  2. After they receive a good searing, add you diced tomatoes and frozen green beans
  3. Let the ingredients mix for about 5 minutes before then adding your cups of water and getting the liquid to a simmer (at this point you can taste the liquid and add a conservative amount of salt and pepper).
  4. Let sit for 30 - 45 mins at a low simmer or until the water tastes like broth and takes on color.

How to Serve and Eat Paella

Serving traditional paella is most like the simplest part of the entire process! Traditional paella was not divided up and plated like you would expect. Instead, people simply ate directly out of the pan. This made it extremely easy for everyone to share food. All you needed was a spoon or fork and you could enjoy fresh paella still warm from the pan. Family and friends did not plate and serve individuals with their own plate or bowl, as those were expensive, and paellas were very communal. To this day, festivals in Spain may contain a large paella that every share. Though, nowadays, most restaurants instead use dishes and bowls. The paella would typically be served with a circular pattern of lemons cut into slices.

Buy the Best Paella Pans and Cookware at Machika Kitchen Today!

Looking for any authentic pans to cook your traditional paella recipe? Then look no further than our line of polished carbon steel pans and enameled steel pans. At Machika, we have all kinds of cookware and kitchen accessories to take your cooking game to the next level. You can shop online today and receive free shipping for all orders over $25! Get yourself a brand new Machika Paella Pan and start making delicious, authentic recipes ASAP.

Maria Perez author blurb machika.com machika kitchen

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