Paella is a wonderful way to utilize leftover meat and veggies. In this simpler version, paella translates very well to a weeknight dish. Traditional paella consists of olive oil, rice, and saffron. You can throw in vegetables, seafood, or meat. Mine is missing the olive oil tonight because I omitted stir-frying veggies- it made for a faster prep and I didn’t have many extra vegetables on hand.
In my opinion, this is a great dish for toddlers. It provides a rainbow of food colors and a lot of different textures. Jude likes to pick and choose what he eats in this dish, but that is what makes paella a great meal to serve him. I used a spicier sausage this time and that can be easily removed for your toddler if it proves to be too much heat.
8 oz. cooked gluten free chicken sausage- I used andouille
a bunch of green onions, diced
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) of gluten-free chicken broth (I used the Pacific foods brand)
1 cup long-grained rice (I used Lundberg’s Jasmine rice)
1/2 cup water
1.5 teaspoons dried thyme, crushed
1/4 teaspoon ground saffron
1/4 teaspoon red pepper, crushed (optional)
8 oz. peeled cooked shrimp
3/4 to 1 cup frozen peas
In my paella tonight, I used a gluten-free Andouille chicken sausage, shrimp, and vegetables. I just threw the sausage, chicken broth, rice, water, thyme, gr. saffron, and red pepper in a skillet. I brought the mixture to a boil, covered it, and let is simmer for about 15 minutes. You want the heat to be just right or all the water will evaporate before your rice has a chance to cook. (You can also add the rice just as the water begins to boil, but the above method works fine for me- just be an attentive cook). After the rice has cooked, I add the cooked shrimp, tomatoes, green onions, peas, and any fresh herbs I may have on hand. I cook until heated through- about 2 minutes. I like the bottom of my paella to get a little brown/crusty, but you need to be careful not to burn it at this stage.
Makes about 4 servings
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