2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion chopped
6 large cloves garlic finely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, diced into small pieces
4 large boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
4 large tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine (sauv blanc, pinot gris)
Salt and pepper to taste
10-12 mussels scraped and cleaned properly
3 3/4 cups low sodium chicken broth or stock (or homemade fish stock) - we used fish stock we found in the grocery store
2 cups paella rice
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 teaspoon saffron powder (or saffron threads)
1 teaspoon paprika (sweet or smoked)
1/2 teaspoon each garlic and onion powders
1 1/2 pounds peeled, deveined shrimp
2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf chopped parsley
Heat oil in a large non-stick pan (or paella pan!), over medium heat. Saute onion, garlic and peppers together. Cook until the onion is translucent- about 3-5 minutes.
Add the chicken and sauté until golden on all sides. Add in the chopped tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 5 minutes until the tomatoes release liquid and they begin to create a sauce.
Add the wine and mussels. Cook for 5 minutes; allow the wine to evaporate to half the quantity, then pour in the stock (or broth), rice, peas, saffron, and spices. Mix all ingredients until well combined.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cover to allow MOST of the liquid to absorb into the rice, about 20-30 minutes, but keep an eye on it. (The paella pan we used didn’t have a lid, so we used a foil tent with clips.) Stir occasionally to prevent rice from sticking and burning to the pan underneath. (Cook until the rice is ALMOST cooked through.)
Add in the prawns, mixing them through the rice, and cover again to allow the prawns and rice to cook completely. Within the last 2 minutes of cooking, crank up the heat to high to develop the crispy bottom that is essentially the BEST part of paella.
Once cooked, sprinkle with the parsley. Drizzle with a small amount of olive oil over the top before serving.