One Pot Wonder: Easy Rice Cooker PaellaJune 24, 2016
Let’s face it, planning meals ahead of time is often the last thing on our minds and commuting home from work is draining. It becomes too easy to succumb to the lure of fast food. (Who can say no to that juicy fried chicken they didn’t have to slave over?) But it comes at a price, literally and figuratively. Frequently eating out can take its toll on our budget and health.
What if we told you that we have a solution for this conundrum? Requiring only a little prep, our recipe for a rice cooker paella is an easy dinner you can momentarily forget while you relax at home.
Filipino cuisine has been irrevocably changed by the Spaniards. (This usually happens after one has been colonized for over three centuries.) One of the more well-known dishes from Spain, the paella has been at the forefront of Spanish cuisine’s representation in the country. Originally from the Valencian region in Spain, the paella was born out of the union of different cultures. The dish grew in popularity during the 19th century in Spain and crossed oceans to different countries.
While the essential ingredients are kept intact in the Philippines, the country’s take on the dish features locally available ingredients in lieu of the classically-favored fare. As is expected when a culture adapts a dish, the paella becomes altered to fit the preferred flavors and textures of Filipinos. Thus, the paella we know and love fits the Filipino tastebud, compared to its authentic Spanish counterpart.
The flavors you associate with local paella can be found in this dish—savory and rich. Tomatoes cut through the richness of the dish, lending a slight fruitiness while the chorizo adds more flavor and a spice to the paella. Despite the ease of this dish, the flavor and complexity you associate with paella is not compromised in any way.
Rice Cooker Paella
Yield: 8 servings
Time: 55 minutes (20 min prep / 35 min cooking)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 can diced tomato, with liquid
- 5 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
- 1 pack paella mix
- 3 cups short grain rice
- 1 can chorizo sausage
- ½ cup frozen peas, defrosted
- 10 pieces black olives, sliced
- salt and pepper, to taste
- freshly chopped parsley, for garnish
- Prepare all the ingredients, and heat the broth until boiling.
- Combine all ingredients except parsley in the rice cooker. Cook until soft and fluffy, around 35 minutes.
- Garnish with chopped parsley and serve immediately.