I love it! I love it! I love it! One of my all-time favorite recipes, made only for very special occasions, is my Paella. This recipe will blow your guests away! Pieces of moist and flavorful chicken, pretty shrimp and beautiful sea scallops cooked with Arborio rice makes this a show stopper! A somewhat pricey dish, I only make this on very special occasions like when my father retired. The first time I made this dish my dad went crazy…he loved it! He had accompanied me to the grocery store that morning to purchase some of the ingredients I was missing. He was flabbergasted at the price of saffron!

Later that month, after my parents had returned to their home in Massachusetts, an large package appeared on our doorstep. Two large tins of saffron from the Middle East had been sent to me. Saffron is one of the most expensive spices available. I am always amazed at the thoughtfulness my parents show to others!

4 chicken breast, cut up into bite size pieces
¼ c. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
8 ounces deveined shrimp without shells
1 large onion, chopped
¾ c. Portuguese or Spanish Chourico
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 bay leaves—dried or fresh
1 tsp. saffron
2 tsp. thyme
1.5 c. canned Italian tomatoes, drained and broken up with your hands
1.5 c. Arborio rice
1 c. clam juice
1.5 c. low-sodium chicken broth
12 large sea scallops, cut in quarters or ½ lb or so bay scallops
1 c. frozen peas
Lemon slices for garnish

Sauté the chicken breasts in olive oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Remove from the pan and add deveined shrimp for a minute until pink. Remove from pan and set aside with chicken. Add your onion, red bell pepper, and green bell pepper. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add sliced chourico or Andouille sausage, minced garlic, bay leaves, saffron threads and a generous pinch of thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes and bring to a boil. Add the beautiful Arborio rice to the mixture and cook until translucent. Add clam juice and low-sodium chicken stock to pan. Cover tightly and cook for five minutes. Tuck a dozen or so scallops and peas in, cover again and let cook for 15 minutes more or until most of the liquid is absorbed.

Garnish with lemon slices. You’re going to love this recipe! I can see this gracing your dinner table during special occasions, holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries! Enjoy!

Saffron, long the world’s most expensive spice by weight native to Southwest Asia, is derived from the flower of the saffron crocus (Crocus sativus). Stalks, known as styles that connect the stigmas to their host plant are extracted by hand, they are the dried and used in cooking to season the food with its unbelievable flour, but also to color it as well. A lovely orange red hue can be seen when using in food)