Grilled Spanish Shellfish and Chorizo Paella

Influenced by the foundations of the original Spanish ingredients and methods, this grilled seafood paella features a bold array of shellfish, spicy pork sausage, a garden of fresh, earthy vegetables and herbs, a plump arborio rice, and a roasting liquid of seafood stock and white wine that is brightened by lemon.

Prepared over a 2-zone grilling surface and infused with the essence of alder wood, the true key in preparing this dish is using the same pan from beginning to end of the cook – building intense layers of flavour while incorporating the oils, browned bits and ingredients from one step of preparation into the next.

Ingredients

1 Alder wood chips for smoking
4 Tablespoons olive oil
8 Ounces calamari
16 Ounces ground chorizo
16 Ounces prawn or large shrimp, cleaned & deveined
1 Large yellow onion, chopped
4-6 Cloves garlic, minced
3 Large roma tomatoes, chopped
1 Cup dry white wine
3 Cups seafood stock
2 Cups arborio rice, soaked in water 30 minutes before cooking & drained
2 Tablespoons sweet paprika
2 Teaspoons chilli powder
1 Teaspoon saffron threads
½ Teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
2 Pinches sugar
1 Red bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 Large handfuls of shelled mussels & clams
1 Lemon, sliced into ⅛ths
Sea salt & peppercorn to taste
Parsely, chopped, to garnish

Preparation

  1. Preheat grill by setting up a 2-zone cooking surface – turn one side of the grill to high heat (direct zone) while leaving the other side off (indirect zone). Place wood packet in rear corner of the direct zone. Close the grill lid and once wood packet is smoking the grill is ready.
  2. Warm oil in a large heavy bottom pan placed over the direct zone grill grates. Toss in calamari, chorizo and prawn. Sauté until calamari and chorizo are just crisp and prawn is near translucent in colour – cautious to not overcook. Remove contents from the pan and set aside.
  3. Return same pan back to the direct zone grill grates, add onion, garlic and tomato and sauté for 7-10 minutes or until onion just begins to caramelize and garlic is fragrant. Scrape all contents and browned bits into a food processor and pulse until well-combined (this mixture is called a, “soffritto”).
  4. Place same pan over the cooler, indirect zone grill grates. Into the pan pour wine, seafood stock and whisk together with the soffritto. When liquids begin to simmer add rice, paprika, chilli powder, saffron, pepper, sugar, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Close grill lid and stir intermittently allowing mixture to slowly reduce by ½. Then, add red pepper and lemon slices, mussels and clams, and the sautéd chorizo, calamari and prawn. Stirring only intermittently, allow the dish to simmer with the grill lid closed until the shellfish open, are fully-cooked through and most of the liquid has been absorbed.
  5. Remove pan from the grill and cool uncovered for 5-10 minutes. To plate and serve, spoon paella into a shallow bowl, season additionally to taste, garnish with fresh lemon slices and chopped parsley.
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