Vegetable Paella With Chorizo
This weeknight paella comes together in just three basic steps: Sweat the aromatics, bake until tender, then return to the stovetop to cook until the rice becomes crunchy. It becomes even more weeknight-friendly if you take advantage of store-bought pre-cut vegetables to cut down on prep time. For a more protein-rich dish, season a dozen medium shrimp with olive oil, salt and pepper and nestle them into the paella during the last 5 minutes of baking. If preparing the dish for vegetarians, skip the chorizo, swap in vegetable broth and add an extra pinch of paprika, if desired. The only non-negotiable step is finishing the paella over direct flame on the stovetop so the rice at the bottom of the pan forms a delectable crust, also known as soccarat.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 3tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ½cup finely chopped yellow or white onion (about 1/2 small onion)
- 5garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 ½cups medium-grain paella rice, such as Bomba or Calasparra (about 10 ounces)
- ½teaspoon smoked paprika
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 3 ½cups 1-inch cauliflower florets (about 10 ounces)
- 2 ½cups halved brussels sprouts, quartered if large (about 10 ounces)
- 1cup fresh or frozen peas (about 5 ounces)
- ¼pound/4 ounces cured Spanish chorizo sausage, skin removed, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 3 ½cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Chopped scallions and lemon wedges, for serving
Step 1Heat oven to 450 degrees. In a 12-inch cast-iron or ovenproof skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, until lightly caramelized, about 2 minutes. Stir in rice, paprika and remaining 1 tablespoon oil; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until well combined and rice begins to toast, about 1 minute.
Step 2Stir in cauliflower, brussels sprouts, peas, chorizo and broth, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil over high heat. Transfer to the oven and bake, uncovered and without stirring, until rice is tender and all of the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
Step 3Transfer paella to stovetop and cook over medium heat, without stirring, to crisp up the bottom layer of rice, 2 to 3 minutes. You will hear it crackle; be careful not to burn. Let stand for 5 minutes, then sprinkle with scallions and serve with lemon wedges.