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A jar of Mesa de Vida Smoky Latin Inspired Cooking Sauce is the start of an incredible, yet simple, Paella, the ultimate one-pan dish. All of the smoky, complex, Spanish inspired seasonings, the bright, flavor enhancing acidic components of lemon juice and a touch of vinegar, along with garlic, onion and peppers are in this one flavor-packed jar full of goodness. No bland, boring dishes. With Mesa de Vida cooking sauces, this is the beginning of something wonderful!

paella-with-mesa-de-vida

Paella is the ultimate one-pan dish that will bring everyone to the table. Keep it simple (yet spectacular) with chicken and maybe some frozen peas, or make it a show stopper with a bit of sherry, chorizo, seafood and a touch of saffron.

Either way, this incredible meal is just at home whether it is for a weeknight dinner in under 30 minutes, or the centerpiece for a gathering of friends and family. Get your sangria brewing and get ready to bring life to your table!

*A little bit about my Paella back story: 

In my private cheffing days, I’ve had the pleasure of catering Paella parties, making Paella in wood fired ovens, making paella for private dinners overlooking Seattle’s Pike Place Market, and even making Paella on a private island for a very discerning client that has eaten Paella in Spain on dozens of occasions (gulp).

This recipe has gotten me a marriage proposal (sorry sir, I’m already married) 😉 and earned a compliment from the client that has eaten in in Spain on multiple occasions that my version was the best he had ever tasted. (Phew!)

I’m sharing it with you because I truly believe our Smoky Latin Cooking & Seasoning sauce makes THE most amazing concentrated flavor base for one of THE most amazing paellas you’ll make in your own kitchen!

Get the recipes, below. If you’ve never made it because you think it’s difficult, you’ll see that it’s easier than you think! Invite some friends over to your Table of Life this weekend and treat them to YOUR amazing paella. 🙂 (I’ve got an amazing menu for your Paella dinner party, and more, here.) 

Cheers!

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Showstopper Paella

Serves 6-8

2 Tb sherry (not fortified/flavored cooking wine, actual Sherry wine)

1 pinch saffron (optional)

2-3 Tb olive oil

1 jar Mesa de Vida Smoky Latin Inspired Cooking Sauce

4 oz Spanish chorizo, outer casing removed, finely diced

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, diced into approximately 1 1/2″ pieces

1 1/2 cups medium grain Paella rice, or Arborio (substitute plain white rice if you wish)

Salt to taste

3 cups chicken broth, homemade or high quality low-sodium store bought

Seafood of your choice (mussels, large shrimp, scallops, clams are all wonderful, allow a few pieces per person)

1 cup frozen peas

Tomato and parsley for garnish, optional

  1. *Optional step if you’re using saffron. Bring the sherry  to a simmer (either on the stove or in the microwave) and add the saffron to “bloom” for a few minutes.
  2. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat, when hot add your oil, swirl to coat. Add your jar of Mesa de Vida Smoky Latin Inspired Cooking Sauce (whoa- your kitchen is about to smell amazing) and simmer for a few seconds.
  3. Add the chorizo, saute for about 30 seconds to begin to crisp and release the tasty juices.
  4. Add the chicken, saute for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
  5. Add your sherry vinegar (with the saffron if using) and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  6. Stir in your rice, saute for about 1 minute to coat with all of the tasty mixture. (Salt to taste at this point.)
  7. Pour in the chicken broth, stir and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat to low and cover, cooking for about 15 minutes.
  8. Raise the heat to medium-high. Stir in the frozen peas and nestle your seafood of choice into the rice. Cover and cook for another 5-10 minutes until the rice is tender, the seafood is just cooked through and the bottom of your rice just begins to get golden brown.
  9. Remove from the heat, uncover and rest for about 5 minutes.
  10. Garnish with tomato slices and parsley and serve. Enjoy!

Simple (yet spectacular) Paella

Serves 4-6

2-3 Tb olive oil

1 jar Mesa de Vida Smoky Latin Inspired Cooking Sauce

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, diced into approximately 1 1/2″ pieces

1 1/2 cups medium grain Paella rice, or Arborio (substitute plain white rice if you wish)

Salt to taste

3 cups chicken broth, homemade or high quality low-sodium store bought

1 cup frozen peas

Tomato and parsley for garnish, optional

  1. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat, when hot add your oil, swirl to coat. Add your jar of Mesa de Vida Smoky Latin Inspired Cooking Sauce (whoa- your kitchen is about to smell amazing) and simmer for a few seconds.
  2. Add the chicken, saute for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Stir in your rice, saute for about 1 minute to coat with all of the tasty mixture. (Salt to taste at this point.)
  4. Pour in the chicken broth, stir and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat to low and cover, cooking for about 15 minutes.
  5. Raise the heat to medium-high. Stir in the frozen peas. Cover and cook for another 5-10 minutes until the rice is tender and the bottom of your rice just begins to get golden brown.
  6. Remove from the heat, uncover and rest for about 5 minutes.
  7. Garnish with tomato slices and parsley and serve. Enjoy!