Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp!

Last week I shared our Swiss mountain adventures and a recipe for delicious Traditional Swiss Rosti. Today we are heading into the beautiful city of Lucerne and sharing a recipe for Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp. I know, Paella is a Spanish dish, so why would I include it in a post about Switzerland? It will all make sense in a minute, I promise.
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Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

The City of Lucerne:

The city of Lucerne is the second stop on our 2018 European vacation (see Italy here and here). Lucerne is lovely, and quite the contrast from the more rural mountain regions of Switzerland, but just as beautiful! During the day, we visited the historical sights…

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

…spent time in, on, and around beautiful Lake Lucerne…

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

…toured the local gardens and castles…

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

…and even spent some time at local farmers markets where we had the best strawberries we have ever tasted!

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

In the evenings we strolled the beautiful streets, walkied along the river…

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

… and attended festivals and firework shows.

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

We were surprised to see that the architecture in Lucerne is a mix of old European Brownstones, modern homes and traditional Swiss chalets. Sometimes the city of Lucerne even reminded me of New York City.

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

Why Paella???

On our last night in Lucerne our family ate at a Spanish restaurant called Bolero where we enjoyed the most delicious and beautiful Paella. In my mind our trip to Switzerland will forever be linked to this classic Spanish rice dish. I decided I wanted to share a Paella dish on the blog, there’s only one problem, I have never made Paella!

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

So I Enlisted a Little Help from My Spanish Daughter in Law

Being that I am from California, and not even remotely Spanish, I was a little intimidated to include a traditional Spanish paella recipe on my blog. Luckily my son is married to a beautiful girl of Spanish decent. Her name is Octavia, maiden name, Escamilla, and she just happens to know how to make a fabulous Paella. She’s also pretty easy on the eyes.

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

What is Paella?:

Paella is a classic Spanish rice dish made on the cooktop, in a single pan. The Escamilla family recipe calls for rabbit and mussels, which is wonderful and adventurous but I adjusted the recipe to be a little more USA grocery store friendly by using chorizo, chicken thighs, and shrimp.

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

What You Need To Know About The Rice and The Pan

Authentic Paella is made with a special rice called “Bomba”. This short-grain rice variety is grown near the village of Calasparra, Spain and is known for it’s ability to absorb large amounts of water while remaining firm. If you’re lucky, you can find Bomba in some grocery stores, I find it easier to just buy online. If you live near a Cost Plus World Market, they often carry it too. Paella is made in a Paella pan (<—this 15″ pan is non-toxic carbon steel and easy to clean) That said you can use a 15″ cast iron pan if you have one, and see how it goes. If it turns out you love Paella and want to make it frequently, you can buy the paella pan when you are ready!

Soccorat, The Secret to Fabulous Paella:

Let’s talk soccorat. Soccorat is the crispy, crunchy, caramelized rice created at the bottom of the paella pan! It’s really one of the best parts of eating Paella. To achieve that crispy goodness you stop stirring your paella and leave it untouched for roughly 20 minutes while it simmers. As the moisture is absorbed by the rice, the pan caramelizes the rice at the bottom of the pan. Take a look below. Notice the crispy soccorat? And the tender chicken, spicy chorizo and perfectly cooked shrimp. Swoon!

Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp! #paella #glutenfree #shrimppaella #chorizo #chickenpaella

The Recipe: Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp!

Tips and what you need: Paella is best if made in Paella pan (<—this 15″ pan is non-toxic, carbon steel and easy to clean). Authenic Paella is made using a short grain rice called “Bomba” (<—buy online or you may find it at Cost Plus World Market) You can usually find saffron at any grocery store but Trader Joe’s has a reasonable price. You can also click here to buy Saffron from Amazon.

5 from 16 votes
Paella Valenciana with Chicken, Chorizo and Shrimp!
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 

A flavorful classic Spanish rice dish made in one pan! Please see notes about using Bomba rice. Cooking time will vary due to burner heat, altitude and pan used, so be sure to keep an eye on your rice. You want that crispy soccorat, but you don't want to burn it:)

Course: dinner
Cuisine: Spanish
Keyword: classic recipe, easy dinner recipe
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Linda Spiker
Ingredients
  • 10 threads saffron toasted
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small white or yellow onion peeled and diced
  • 8-9 oz pork chorizo no casing or casing removed
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut in half
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled and minced or grated
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 32 oz chicken broth four cups
  • 2 cups paella rice or "bomba"
  • 8 raw shrimp deveined and shelled
  • 5 artichoke hearts packed in water quartered
  • 1 large tomato diced
  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley chopped
  • 2 lemons quartered for garnish and squeezing
Instructions
  1. Prepare all ingredients
  2. Take a small piece of foil, fold into a little envelope or pouch. Place saffron inside and seal.
  3. Heat paella pan on medium heat, when pan is hot place foil pouch in pan. Heat both sides for 15 seconds, remove from heat and set aside
  4. Immediately add olive olive to hot pan, add onions, chorizo, and chicken thighs to pan, cook stirring frequently for 12 minutes
  5. Add garlic, saffron threads, smoked paprika, sea salt and pepper, stir and cook, stirring for 2-3 more minutes
  6. Add chicken broth and rice, turn heat up to high, stir well and to pan bring to a boil
  7. Once boiling, turn heat to medium and let it simmer untouched and unstirred for about 20 minutes until all liquid is absorbed This is how the soccorat is created.It can be helpful to turn pan every 5 minutes to avoid hot spots. Be sure to watch and use your nose so rice doesn't burn. You want the rice at the bottom of the pan crispy but not burned
  8. Once liquid is absorbed, tuck artichoke hearts and shrimp into rice, sprinkle with diced tomatoes, cook for five minutes on low

  9. Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes

  10. Sprinkle with parsley, serve, scraping the bottom of pan to get that crispy soccorat! Add lemon wedges for squeezing. Enjoy.

 

 

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Chicken Piccata

This is a meal my family begs for. They love it! And so do I. They love it because it’s light, lemony and the chicken is oh so tender. I love it because it takes about 15 minutes to prep and cooks in ten minutes! Yep, in the time it takes to cook pasta you can be eating this…
(This post contains affiliate links, I may make a commission off sales, your price remains the same)

Chicken Piccata

Chicken Piccata:

Chicken Piccata is very simple: chicken breast cutlets, dredged in flour, browned, and served with a sauce of butter, lemon juice, capers, and chicken stock and white wine. It can be prepared in 20 minutes or less and is so easy and delicious it should be part of every home cook’s repertoire.

Chicken Piccata from The Organic Kitchen

What to Serve it With:

Chicken Piccata is usually served with pasta, mashed potatoes, or steamed broccoli but you could also serve it with asparagus, artichokes, green beans or a beautiful salad.

Chicken Piccata from The Organic KitchenHow to Make a Cutlet:

Chicken Piccata is made with a chicken breast prepared as a cutlet. Some stores carry prepared cutlets. To make your own, slice the breast so it is half as thick as it was, place between plastic or parchment and pound with a rolling pin.

Chicken Piccata from The Organic Kitchen

Sprinkle lightly with Maldon flaked sea salt, a little freshly ground pepper and then dredge with flour. I love my battery operated pepper mill because I can grind pepper with one hand which is important when handling raw chicken!

Chicken Piccata from The Organic Kitchen

I find this hand held juicing tool invaluable! It can be found at any kitchen store and even many super markets. Or have it delivered to your door here.

Chicken Piccata from The Organic KitchenPasta Cooking Tips:

When cooking pasta there are only a few things to remember. Follow pasta box cooking instructions, they usually are right on. Salt the water for flavor. To keep pasta from sticking be sure to have lots of water in your pot, at least several inches above the pasta and stir frequently. Putting oil in the water does not keep pasta from sticking. You have heard the saying oil and water don’t mix right? Well it’s true, oil just floats on top of the water having no effect on the pasta. After pasta is cooked, strain in a colander (do not rinse) and then drizzle with olive oil and toss to prevent sticking.

Chicken Piccata from The Organic Kitchen

MAKING THIS MEAL GLUTEN FREE AND JUST AS GOOD!

If you live without gluten you don’t have to miss out on exceptional pasta! Jovial Foodsmakes the best gluten free pasta around. I am lucky enough to live by a store that carries it, but if you aren’t you can order it here!

The Recipe: Chicken Piccata

What you will need: a good knife (my favorite) and a good pan.

5 from 3 votes
Chicken Piccata
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 
A light lemony chicken and pasta dish! Can serve 2-4 depending on appetites.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: easy dinner recipe, easy pasta recipe, kid-friendly recipes
Author: Linda Spiker
Ingredients
  • The Recipe: Chicken Piccata
  • 16 ounces pasta (or if you prefer no pasta, see serving suggestions above)
  • 2 organic chicken breasts made into four cutlets .
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup flour (we use Jovial gluten free)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/3 C white wine
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2/3 C chicken broth
  • 1 lemon juice one half, slice other half
  • 1 T capers drained
  • 3 T butter
  • 2 T Chopped fresh parsley for garnish
  • Pasta cooked according to package instructions
Instructions
  1. If using pasta, start a large pot of water and bring to a boil, cook pasta according to package directions. While waiting for water, prepare all ingredients

To make cutlets:
  1. Cut a chicken breast in half so it is half as thick as it was (they don't have to be perfect so no worries if one half is a little thicker than the other) then place between plastic wrap or parchment paper and pound with a rolling pin till chicken is about 1/4 inch thin.
  2. Sprinkle each cutlet, front and back, lightly with our sea salt and a little freshly ground pepper and then dredge with flour. Set aside.

  3. (just a reminder to start pasta when water is boiling:)

  4. Place a large pan on med/high heat, add olive oil to coat bottome of pan

  5. When pan and oil are hot, add cutlets.
  6. Sauté for 3 minutes or until golden in color, turn and cook other side for 3 minutes.
  7. Remove chicken from pan, place on a plate and cover (they do not need to be cooked through)

  8. Turn heat off. Add wine to pan.
  9. Turn heat back on to medium and scrape pan with rubber spatula to loosen any browning and chicken bits.

  10. When wine simmers, add minced garlic.
  11. Simmer for about two minutes, being careful not to burn the garlic, then add broth, butter, lemon juice, lemon slices and capers, stir

  12. Return to simmer and add cutlets to pan. Cook for a minute or two on each side. (do not overcook).
  13. Check chicken to be sure it is cooked through.
  14. When pasta is al dente, pour into a colander (do not rinse) drizzle with a little olive oil and toss.
  15. To plate: place pasta on each dish, top with chicken and sauce.
  16. Garnish with parsley and serve.

I hope your family loves this recipe as much as we do! ~ Linda Spiker

Chicken Piccata from The Organic Kitchen

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