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The secret to a good paella, besides excellent ingredients, cooking technique and experience is to achieve a slightly crispy – but not burnt – bottom.



Total time

45 minutes






  • 200 g short-grain rice
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 8 langoustines
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ l vegetable stock
  • 1 tomato
  • ½ cup red or green bell pepper
  • a handful of peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 pinches of saffron
  • olive oil
  • salt, pepper to taste
  • thyme and paprika to taste
  • 1 zest and juice of lemon


  1. Bring about 2 dcl of water to a boil and soak saffron in it for at least 5 minutes. Wash and dry chicken thighs, then season with salt, pepper, thyme and paprika.
  2. Wash and dry your tomato, bell peppers and langoustines. Peel and dice your onion and garlic. Dice tomato and bell peppers.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large pan and place langoustines. Fry on all sides for about 5 minutes, then remove. Add chicken thighs and fry for about 15 minutes on all sides, until the chicken develops a crust, then remove.
  4. Without cleaning the pan, add diced onions and fry until translucent, stirring constantly. Try to pick up as much residue from the bottom of the pan as possible, then add garlic, tomato and bell peppers and fry for another minute. Add rice, mix it in with the sofritto, then pour in the stock. Season to taste, then replace the chicken thighs and bacon back in and let it cook on medium without stirring, until the rice is almost done.
  5. By this time you should be hearing crackling from the pan, which means the water is evaporated and the rice on the bottom is becoming crispy. Lower your heat. If your rice is still underdone, just add a bit of water here and there and let it soak it up, but take care to not overflow it, as you need the crispy bottom (but not burnt!).
  6. About 5 minutes before the rice is cooked, add in peas and langoustines and continue cooking on low, then remove and serve with sliced lemon.
  7. View the recipe instructions at Vibrant Plates

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