Pasta Paella

We are gearing up for a long weekend and getting ready to tackle the dining room. The to-do list includes painting, recovering the chairs, and putting up a chair rail. (It doesn't look like the board and batten will work...more on that later, though). 

To keep us fueled, there is our Pasta Paella recipe. We first had pasta paella at Modesto, one of our favorite tapas restaurants. I saw this recipe from Rachael Ray soon after and knew we had to try it. We changed RR's original recipe a bit and this is what we came up with.


Pasta Paella
Adapted from Rachael Ray


  • 3 cups chicken broth (to be on the safe side, we make 4-5 cups)
  • 2 pinchs saffron threads
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 2/3 cup 1/2-inch pieces vermicelli pasta or spaghetti (a couple of generous handfuls)
  • 1 pound skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 ripe tomato, halved horizontally and grated on the largest holes of a box grater (discard the skin)
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 pound peeled, deveined medium shrimp
  • 1/2 pound frozen peas
  • cherry tomatoes 
  • 1/4 pound Spanish chorizo sausage, cut into cubes or sliced into half-moons

  1. In a medium saucepan, keep the chicken broth and saffron warm over medium-low heat.
  2. In a paella pan or large nonstick skillit, heat some olive oil and saute the sausage until nicely browned. Removed from the pan and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, heat 1 tablesoon olive oil. Sauté the onion until soft, about 5 min. Toss in the garlic, too. Add the tomato and season well with salt, and sauté until the water from the tomato has cooked out and the mixture has darkened to a burgundy color and is a very thick purée, 10 to 15 min. (This tomato-onion-garlic mixture, called the sofrito, is the flavor base for the paella.)

4. Move the sofrito the the middle, add some EVOO, and add the chicken. Cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.

5. Add the vermicelli and toast until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the saffron broth and bring to a boil, then lower the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

6.  Stir in the shrimp and peas, cover and cook for 3 minutes. Add the chicken, sausage and cherry tomatoes. Cook until bubbly and serve!


  1. OH yum! This looks like a great recipe! Ive had pasta paella b4 one of my friends made it for us for a dinner party and it was so tasty! That sucks that the board and batten isnt goin to work..ut so long as youve found something u like!

  2. I'm always looking for new recipes. Nothing like good, home cooked food.

  3. Every time I visit your blog I salivate! OMG, that paella looks great. I studied in Spain for six months and I swear i tried every paella ever made there. SO good. Thanks for your kind comments on my blog.