Hailing from coastal Spain, this recipe calls for a plethora of seafood. Ask your fishmonger for the freshest langoustines or head-on shrimp available. We ran the recipe with David Rosengarten’s feature “The Art of Paella” (April 2010).
- 25 threads saffron, crushed (a heaping 1/4 tsp.)
- 1 lb. boneless monkfish filets, cut into 2″ pieces
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 8 langoustines or extra-large head-on shrimp in the shell
- 10 oz. cuttlefish or small squid, cleaned and cut into 1″ pieces
- 1 tbsp. smoked paprika
- 4 medium tomatoes, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 green bell pepper, cored and chopped
- 1 small onion, minced
- 7 cups fish broth
- 2 1⁄2 cups short-grain rice, preferably Valencia or bomba
- 1⁄2 lb. small clams, cleaned
- Put saffron and 1⁄4 cup hot water in a small bowl; let sit for 15 minutes. Season monkfish with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a 16″-18″ paella pan over medium-high heat. Add monkfish and langoustines and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 5 minutes; transfer monkfish and langoustines to a plate and set aside. Add cuttlefish, paprika, tomatoes, garlic, peppers, and onions to pan and cook, stirring often, until onions are soft, about 6 minutes. Add reserved saffron mixture and broth, season with salt, and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Sprinkle in rice, distribute evenly with a spoon, and cook, without stirring, until rice has absorbed most of the liquid, 10-12 minutes. (If your pan is larger than the burner, rotate it every two minutes so different parts are over the heat and the rice cooks evenly.) Reduce heat to low, add reserved fish and langoustines, and nestle in clams hinge side down; cook, without stirring, until clams have opened and rice has absorbed the liquid and is al dente, 5-10 minutes. Remove pan from heat, cover with aluminum foil, and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
See our step-by-step guide to making paella in the gallery, below.