Classic Paella

This classic recipe calls for preparing paella in steps. Don't be overwhelmed by the process. It's really quite simple and a pleasure to make. You'll want a proper paella pan and the right rice to make this correctly. 

100 ml tablespoons olive oil
1 white onion (finely chopped)
2 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
4 ripe tomatoes (peeled, seeded, cored & diced )
3 large red bell peppers (seeded & finely chopped)
2 bay leaves
bunch of thyme 

750ml water or unsalted chicken stock
¼ tsp smoked paprika
pinch saffron threads
1 tbsp olive oil
100 g chorizo, sliced into ½ cm rounds
250 g calamari rounds
¼ cup sofrito
1 cup bomba rice or Valencia rice
100ml white wine
6 large green prawns
Salt, to taste
12 black mussels

Chopped parsley
Lemon or lime wedges

Make sofrito

Heat the oil in a large paella pan over low-medium heat. Sauté onion, garlic, peppers, tomatoes, and herbs over low heat for about an hour or until the everything's reduced to a thick paste. Remove paste from the pan and let cool in bowl. 

Make paella

Heat the paella pan over a medium heat (no need to wash it after making the sofrito). Add the olive oil and chorizo and cook for five minutes and looks crisp. Remove and set aside.

Add 1/4 cup of sofrito to the pan and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the calamari rings and cook for 2-3 minutes and add the chorizo back to the pan. Add saffron and rice. 

Stir to make sure the rice is coated in sofrito and then add the wine, cooking until it's mostly evaporated. 

Add the water. Stir the mixture and make sure the rice is spread evenly over the base of the pan. Bring to a boil. Cook 3-5 minutes or until the rice begins to swell and absorbs some of the liquid. 

Add the prawns and a pinch of salt. Stir gently and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 3–5 minutes until the stock reduces.

Add the mussels and continue to cook for 8 minutes or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender.

Reduce heat to low and cook for 5 more minutes or until a crust forms on the bottom of the pan.

Remove from the heat and allow to rest for a few minutes. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve from the pan with lemon wedges.