Seafood Paella

A seafood paella is without a doubt one of the most emblematic dishes in the Region of Valencia and all over Spain and it has become a tourist attraction for anyone visiting the country. Is it possible to resist such a delicious dish with the best ingredients from the coast of Spain?
Seafood paella

We are not sure when the seafood paella originated or if it emerged at the same time as the traditional Valencian paella. Although it is believed that it was when meat ingredients were substituted for seafood. The richness of the Mediterranean Sea provided fishermen with the ingredients to make this exquisite alternative.

Today we will use the Albufera rice, a recent variety created in Valencia and cultivated only in the Albufera Natural Park. The Albufera rice variety is a cross between bomba rice (a short grain rice that doubles its size when cooked, whith a great capacity to absorb flavors) and senia rice, which brings together the best of each varieties, that is, it withstands overcooking and absorbs great flavor. If you cannot find this rice, do not worry as you can also use bomba rice.

Recipe information

  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 50 minutes
  • Total time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 serves
  • Category: main course
  • Type of cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Calories per serving (kcal): 736

Ingredients for Seafood Paella

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 Norway lobsters
  • 4 shrimp
  • ½ pound chopped squid
  • 8 mussels
  • Sweet paprika
  • ¾ cup tomato purée
  • 6¾ cups fish or seafood stock
  • Salt
  • 14 saffron threads
  • 2 cups albufera or bomba rice (a short grain rice that doubles its size when cooked)
  • ⅓ pound diced monkfish
Ingredients for seafood paella Héctor Medina

How to make Seafood Paella

Let’s start as we always do by adding ½ cup of extra virgin olive oil to the paella pan to level it out. On a medium heat, sear the Norway lobsters and shrimp on both sides so the oil absorbs all the flavor. Once done, remove from the pan.

Lightly fry the seafood Héctor Medina

Next add the ½ pound of diced squid and the 8 mussels. When the mussels open, remove them and set them aside for later.

Squid and mussels Héctor Medina

Reduce the heat to a low heat, add the sweet paprika to the pan and stir twice into the oil to incorporate all the taste. Immediately afterwards, add the tomato purée. Mix in with the squid and leave to cook until the water evaporates and a dark red color is obtained.

Seafood paella sofrito Héctor Medina

Now add the stock to the pan. For this variety of rice, you need four parts of stock to one of rice. Bring to the boil, taste for salt and add the saffron threads. When it begins to boil, add the rice and leave it to cook for 19 minutes. Cook on a high heat for the first 6 minutes.

Stock and rice for seafood paella Héctor Medina

After the first 6 minutes, lower the heat a bit and add the diced monkfish. Adding at this point will mean they will stay juicy. Continue to cook on a medium heat for 8 minutes. Always keep an eye on the heat.

Monkfish for seafood paella Héctor Medina

Now add the Norway lobsters, shrimp and mussels that were set to one side. Reduce the heat to a low heat until the end and, if you want to have a famous socarrat (crispy and toasted bottom of the paella) on our paella, turn up the heat for the last minute, but be careful not to burn it. Now wait a few minutes for it to rest and then it is time to eat.

Add the seafood Héctor Medina

Easy instructions

  1. Add the oil and sear the shrimp and Norway Lobsters
  2. Add the squid and mussels until they open
  3. Cook the sofrito with the sweet paprika and tomato purée
  4. Add stock, taste for salt, add saffron and when it boils, add the rice and cook for 19 minutes
  5. Lower heat after first 6 minutes and add diced monkfish
  6. Add shrimp, Norway lobsters and mussels. Lower heat and cook until minute 19