Basic Paella Cooking Methods

According to tradition in Valencia, paella is cooked by men over an open fire, fueled by orange and pine branches along with pine cones. This produces an aromatic smoke which infuses the paella. Also, dinner guests traditionally eat directly out of the paellera which is traditionally served at room temperature.

Paella usually has a layer of toasted rice at the bottom of the pan. This is considered a delicacy in Spain and is essential to a good paella.   The toasted rice develops on its own if the paella is cooked over a burner or open fire. If cooked in an oven, however, it will not.

To correct this, place the paellera (Paella Pan) on a burner with a high flame while listening to the rice toast at the bottom of the pan. Then, remove it from the heat once the aroma of toasted rice wafts upwards. The paella then must sit for about five minutes before serving to absorb whatever broth remains in the rice.

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