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Paella


1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced into 6 to 8 pieces, or
1 lb. chicken tenders with tendons removed
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
4 cups chicken stock or 4 teaspoons chicken base or bouillon mixed with 4 cups water
1/4 gram (1/2 teaspoon) saffron threads
1 bay leaf – optional
1 recipe (1/2 lb.) Spicy Italian Sausage or Chorizo
2 onions, chopped
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced or pressed
1 red, yellow or green bell pepper, diced
4 fresh tomatoes, peeled and diced or 1 28-oz. can chopped tomatoes
2 cups uncooked long-grain rice
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. fresh peas or 1 10-oz. package frozen petite peas
1 lb. fresh medium shrimp, shelled and deveined with tails intact
1/2 lb. bay or sea scallops
1/2 lb. clams in the shell, scrubbed
1/2 lb. mussels, scrubbed and debearded* – optional


1. Season chicken pieces with salt, black pepper and oregano; set aside. Heat stock or bouillon In a medium saucepan on high until steaming; add saffron, remove from heat and let steep.

2. Heat a 6- to 8-quart Dutch oven, paella pan or large oven proof skillet or casserole on medium. Add sausage and brown 8 to 10 minutes, allowing sausage to stick slightly to pan. Remove sausage from pan and set aside on paper towels to drain if necessary. (If sausage is between 96% to 98% fat free, sausage may be cooked in casings, cooled, then sliced into pieces.)

3. Without cleaning drippings from pan, return to medium heat; add chicken and brown about 2 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.

4. Add onions and garlic to pan and sauté 5 minutes allowing moisture from onions to deglaze any browned bits from surface of pan. Add tomatoes, red pepper, rice and reserved saffron stock to onions and garlic. Stirring frequently, bring mixture to low boil; reduce heat to low, stir in teaspoon olive oil, cover and simmer 25 minutes.

5. Preheat oven to 400º F. Remove pan from heat, mix sausage, chicken and peas in with rice. Top rice with, prawns, clams, mussels, etc. and bake for 20 minutes. Remove paella from oven cover with foil and let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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