Nadia Sawalha’s Pretend Paella

For a quick supper, this cheat’s dish is ideal

This simple paella can be rustled up very quickly … and tastes every bit as good as the real thing!

(Serves 4)

2–3tbsp olive oil
2 onions, sliced
3 medium tomatoes, cut into 8
3–6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
300g basmati rice
Pinch of saffron threads
1 heaped tsp smoked paprika (optional)
150ml dry sherry or white wine
400ml hot fish stock (from a cube is fine)
400g pack of frozen seafood mix
100g frozen peas
Lemon wedges, to serve
Handful of chopped parsley leaves, to serve


1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook for two to three minutes, stirring, until softened. Add the tomatoes and stir.

2. Add the rice, saffron and paprika (if using), and stir for one minute.

3. Pour in the sherry or wine. Increase the heat to bring up to the bubble for one minute, stirring to burn off the alcohol, then reduce the heat to medium.

4. Add the stock and seafood mix, cover, and simmer very gently for 15 minutes over a low heat, or until the rice and fish are cooked. Add the peas three minutes before the end. Don’t stir.

5. When the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed, you’re ready to go, with a good squeeze from the lemon wedges, and a flourish of chopped parsley.

Tip: Feel free to add chunks of fried chorizo, if you eat meat.

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Mother of three grown-up daughters I am the ultimate multi-tasker and am passionate about my role as Silversurfers Website Editor and Social Media Manager. Always on the lookout for all things that will interest and entertain our community. Fueling fun for the young at heart!

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