Campfire Paella

Serves 6 to 8 people


Large pinch of saffron threads
8 or 9 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2½ lbs)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 Spanish chorizo (about 8 oz), skin removed and sliced
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon sweet or hot smoked paprika
1½ cups short-grain rice (such as bomba or carneroli)
4 cups chicken broth
1 jar roasted sweet red peppers, preferably pimenton, drained and cut into strips
1 cup frozen petite peas
2 lemons, cut into wedges


In a small bowl, stir together the saffron and ¼ cup hot water. Set aside. Prepare a charcoal or wood grill for direct grilling over medium-high heat.

Season the chicken all over with salt and pepper. Place a 15-inch paella pan on the grill over the fire and add a few glugs of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken and sear, turning once, until browned on both sides, about 8 minutes total. Transfer the chicken to a plate, then add the chorizo. Cook the chorizo until lightly browned, stirring. Transfer the chorizo to the same plate with the chicken (leaving the oil in the pan).

Add the onion to the pan and cook, stirring, until the onion starts to brown and soften, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, garlic, and paprika and cook, stirring, until the juices are bubbling. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until the rice is nicely toasted. Add 3 cups broth, stir, and cover the pan with foil. If possible, cover the grill (if not, the foil works just fine). Cook for 10 minutes.

Uncover the pan and add the remaining chicken broth. Nestle the chorizo and chicken thighs into the rice. Cover with the foil and cook for another 20 minutes. Sprinkle the peppers and peas over the rice and cook uncovered until the rice is tender, about 10 minutes longer. Serve with plenty of lemon wedges.

Recipe developed by Kim Laidlaw

1 comment:

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