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When most people think about Spanish food one of the first dishes that come to mind is paella. It is appropriate since paella is one of the oldest and most popular of Spanish recipes. It is a complicated dish with many ingredients and many variations that actually allow tor the cook's taste and ingenuity. It combines the rice that was brought from China by the Moors, peppers and tomatoes that came with Columbus and the fresh fish of the coast of Spain. Paella comes from southern Spain, principally the province of Valencia, one of the liveliest and most colorful regions of the country. The lobster is cooked in its shell. When buying it, have the fish market cut the tails in 2 inch pieces.

Servings: 8 to 10


  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 pounds chicken parts
  • ½ pound lean pork, cubed
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1 green pepper, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 6 breakfast link pork sausages cut in 1 inch pieces
  • ¼ pound short grain white rice
  • 1 quart hot water or chicken broth
  • A few threads of saffron
  • 2 pounds snapper or grouper cut in steaks or 1 inch thick filets
  • 1 pound shrimp, shelled and cleaned
  • 3 large lobster tails (optional)
  • 1 7-ounce can pimentos, divided
  • 1 8-ounce can artichoke hearts, divided
  • 1 8-ounce can tiny green peas, divided
  • Directions

    To cook a paella you will need a very large Dutch oven if you do not own a cazuela or a paella pan.

    The dish must be served from the pot where it has been cooked.

    If the pot is not very presentable it can be disguised by wrapping the outside with colorful napkins.

    Heat the oil in the pot where the dish is to be cooked.

    Start browning the chicken in the oil, add the diced pork and cook until they are both browned on all sides. At low to medium heat, add the onion, garlic, pepper, tomatoes and salt.

    Cook for a few minutes and add the pork sausage.

    Continue cooking for 15 minutes at low heat.

    Stir in the rice, cover with all the sauce that has gathered in the pot. Continue cooking for an additional 15 minutes.

    Dissolve the saffron in the water or broth and gradually add the liquid little by little during these last 15 minutes.

    The broth or water must remain very hot as you add it.

    During the last 10 minutes of cooking time add the fish, the optional lobster, and finally the shrimp.

    Add half the can of pimentos, chopped.

    Continue cooking for 20 minutes more until most of the liquid has been absorbed yet the rice is still moist.

    Add the artichokes mixing them in with a fork as you slightly fluff the rice.

    Garnish with the peas and the last half of the can of pimentos, cut in strips.

    Sea Food

    Grilled Fish
    Pescado a la Parrilla

    Fish in Escabeche
    Escabeche de Pescado

    Cuban Cooking





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    Soups & Stews
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    Last time this page was edited August 25, 2015
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