Paella has always been a dish that brings people together.
With its vibrant colors, rich flavors, and delightful aroma, it’s the perfect meal to serve when you want to impress your guests.
I want to share with you my experience cooking a delicious Bomba Rice Paella, which incorporates an amazing combination of seafood, chicken, and chorizo – all infused with flavorful saffron.
Follow along as I provide a step-by-step guide to help you create this scrumptious Spanish classic in your own kitchen!
Why You’ll Love This Bomba Rice Paella Recipe
- Authentic Spanish flavors: The combination of ingredients like saffron, chorizo, and Bomba rice give this paella an undeniable taste of Spain.
- Perfect for special occasions: Impress your guests at your next dinner party with a beautifully presented and flavorful paella.
- Versatile dish: This recipe can be easily modified to suit your preferences or dietary needs.
- One-pan meal: Cooking everything in a single pan not only simplifies the process but also allows the flavors to meld together perfectly.
- Fun cooking experience: Paella is a dish that allows you to experiment and play around with flavors, making it an enjoyable experience for both beginners and experienced cooks.
- Paella pan or large skillet: A traditional paella pan is a wide, shallow pan that promotes even cooking, but a large skillet will work in a pinch.
- Slotted spoon: This will help you to remove the cooked chorizo and squid from the pan without taking the oil with it.
- Lid or aluminum foil: Use these to cover the paella during the resting phase to allow flavors to meld and rice to fully cook.
- Olive oil (1-2 tbsp): This will provide the base for cooking our ingredients and enhance the overall flavor of the dish.
- Chorizo (7 oz / 200g): Sliced into 1/2 cm / 1/5″ thick, this smoky sausage adds depth to the paella.
- Calamari (200g / 6 oz): Cut into 1/4″ thick rings, it offers a tender and flavorful seafood addition.
- Diced onion (1): Choose from brown, white, or yellow – it will add a subtle sweetness and aroma.
- Minced garlic (3 cloves): This essential ingredient enhances the savory flavors of the dish.
- Diced red bell pepper (1): It adds color, sweetness, and a bit of crunch.
- Paella rice (1 1/2 cups): Bomba, Valencia, or Calasparra rice will provide the authentic texture and absorb the flavors well.
- Ripe tomatoes (2, peeled and diced) or canned crushed tomato (3/4 cup): Both options provide a rich, tangy flavor to the paella.
- Chicken thigh fillets (300g / 10 oz): Cut into 1.5″ / 3.5cm pieces, this leaner meat will absorb the flavors and remain tender.
- Chicken broth (3 1/2 cups): A high-quality broth adds depth and flavor to the rice.
- Saffron threads (1 tsp): This luxurious spice infuses the paella with its signature golden hue and exquisite taste.
- Frozen peas (1 cup): These little green gems bring a pop of color and freshness to the dish.
- Whole prawns (12-16): With their shell on, these succulent seafood delights will be a showstopper in the paella.
- Large mussels (12): Cleaned and fresh, they add a briny flavor and elegant presentation.
- Fresh parsley, chopped: A sprinkle will provide a bright, herby contrast.
- Lemon wedges (2): These will add a zestiness to balance out the dish’s rich flavors.
How To Make Bomba Rice Paella
- Step 1 – Brown the chorizo: Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a paella pan or large skillet over high heat. Cook the chorizo until browned on each side (approximately 3 minutes), then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Step 2 – Cook the squid: Add the calamari to the same pan and cook for 45 seconds on each side. Remove and set aside.
- Step 3 – Sauté the aromatics: Add more oil if necessary, then cook the garlic and onion for 2 minutes. Add bell pepper and cook for another minute.
- Step 4 – Cook the chicken: Add chicken pieces and cook for 2 minutes until the outside is lightly browned but still raw inside.
- Step 5 – Mix rice with the ingredients: Add rice to the pan and mix, ensuring the grains are coated in oil.
- Step 6 – Add cooking broth: Stir in most of the chorizo (reserve some for garnish), chicken stock, fresh or crushed tomato, and saffron.
Ingredient Variations and Substitutions
- Veggie Delight: Replace chicken and seafood with an array of vegetables like artichokes, zucchini, and mushrooms for a vegetarian version.
- Alternative Meats: For a less traditional take, try using different meats such as pork, beef, or turkey.
- Seafood Extravaganza: Substitute various seafood like clams, scallops, or even a white fish like cod to make it truly ocean-inspired.
Preparation and Cooking Tips
- Using high-quality ingredients will make the dish even more flavorful and delicious.
- Don’t stir the rice during the cooking process, or it will become sticky and stodgy.
- When adding the peas, gently push them into the paella but avoid stirring at this stage.
- Ensure the mussels are fresh, cleaned, and tightly closed before use. Any mussels that do not open during cooking should be discarded.
- Letting the paella rest covered after cooking will ensure the rice is fully cooked and the flavors meld together perfectly.
Paella is a rich and complex dish that pairs well with a variety of sides ranging from simple to sophisticated:
- Simple salad with a light and citrus-based vinaigrette to balance the dish’s richness.
- Crusty bread or toasted baguettes as an accompaniment.
- A crisp, dry white wine like Albariño or Vinho Verde will cut the paella’s flavor without overpowering it, while a fruity and robust red like Tempranillo works well if you want a full-bodied wine.
- Paella is an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals from nutritious ingredients like chicken, seafood, vegetables, and rice.
- Incorporating saffron into the recipe provides numerous health benefits such as anti-inflammatory properties and mood enhancement.
- One-pan meals like paella make for easy clean-up and hassle-free cooking.
Storage Tips and Shelf Life
Store any leftover paella in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.
To reheat, add a splash of chicken broth or water to the paella and heat it in the microwave or a skillet over medium heat until heated through.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use a different type of rice for paella?
While Bomba, Valencia, or Calasparra rice is preferred, other short-grain rice varieties like Arborio or Carnaroli can be used in a pinch.
Do I need a paella pan to make this dish?
While a paella pan works best, a large skillet can be used instead.
Can I make this paella ahead of time?
Paella should be made fresh and consumed immediately for best results. However, leftovers can be stored and reheated as noted above.
Bomba Rice Paella
- Paella pan or large skillet
- Slotted spoon
- Lid or aluminum foil
- 1 – 2 tbsp Olive oil
- 7 oz Chorizo 200 grams
- 6 oz Calamari 200 grams
- 1 onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 red bell pepper diced
- 2 Ripe tomatoes peeled and diced
- 10 oz Chicken thigh fillets 300 grams
- 3 ½ cups Chicken broth
- 1 tsp Saffron threads
- 1 cup Frozen peas
- 12 – 16 prawns whole
- 12 mussels large
- Fresh parsley chopped
- 2 Lemon wedges
- Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a paella pan or large skillet over high heat. Cook the chorizo until browned on each side (approximately 3 minutes), then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add the calamari to the same pan and cook for 45 seconds on each side. Remove and set aside.
- Add more oil if necessary, then cook the garlic and onion for 2 minutes. Add bell pepper and cook for another minute.
- Add chicken pieces and cook for 2 minutes until the outside is lightly browned but still raw inside.
- Add rice to the pan and mix, ensuring the grains are coated in oil.
- Stir in most of the chorizo (reserve some for garnish), chicken stock, fresh or crushed tomato, and saffron.
Peter Lee, a food industry expert and Managing Editor, is passionate about exploring diverse culinary experiences. With a love for writing and food culture, Peter constantly seeks new flavors in restaurants, local markets, and global dishes. His dedication to quality content continues to influence and inspire food enthusiasts.