So here’s the deal – this isn’t really paella. I feel kind of like a fraud for calling it that, but it sounds so much better and fancier than “rice casserole.”
You know it’s true – I have nothing against rice casseroles, and paella is actually that in its own right. I digress though, and we’ll just settle on this being a paella despite the lack of shorter grain rice and the fact that it’s made in a Dutch oven and not a real paella pan. And saffron? Y’all, I’m all for keeping the integrity of a dish – really, I appreciate it – but girlfriend isn’t spending that money on crocus stamens. Nope!
OH! So I was watching Ellen a while back and Gwyneth Paltrow was on talking about her book, My Father’s Daughter, and she made paella in a real paella pan. It was nothing short of super fancy and if I had a need/room in my kitchen to keep one I totally would, just because they look that cool.
See? Important. I only know how to talk about important things on here, clearly 😉
Anyway, this is really really good. It’s really inexpensive and easy to throw together, and I used Mexican (uncooked) chorizo in mine because Lord help me I cannot find Spanish chorizo anywhere. ANYWHERE. And you know what? I don’t even care because Mexican chorizo reminds me of my favorite breakfast burritos ever – Mama Josie’s chorizo and potato with a huge Diet Coke? Don’t mind if I do!
BUDGET-FRIENDLY CHICKEN AND CHORIZO PAELLA
- 2 6-ounce chicken breasts, cubed
- 4 ounces Mexican chorizo
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1-1/2 cups long grain white rice
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup frozen peas
Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the chorizo and onion, stir to combine and let it sit and caramelize/soften for about 5-7 minutes. Add the cubed chicken and stir to combine, letting it cook for about 5 minutes. Add the chopped roasted red bell pepper, minced garlic, paprika, oregano, turmeric, salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes and rice. Stir everything to combine, and then add the water. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat, cover, and allow to cook for about 30 minutes until the rice is tender. Remove from the heat, stir in the frozen peas, replace the lid and let the pot sit off the heat for 5-10 minutes. Serve hot!