WP_20160306_18_52_13_ProThere’s a lot of food in the Shift Series. From biscuits with Teresa, to various salads with Cecelia, Leah eats (or has no appetite for, as is the case in some scenes) many meals over the course of the books. Food is a language all its own–a language of individual families, passed on over generations; it’s a language of celebration and comfort, survival and sustenance; it has cultural roots, regional ties, but respects no political borders. To me, food is an ultimate expression of life lived.  And with Leah living so many new experiences over the course of the series–especially in SHIFT and RECAST–it just made sense that some of her experiences would be personified in food.

I decided, some months back, to write a series of posts where I give the recipes for the various dishes encountered throughout the Shift Series. First, I posted the recipe for Black Forest Cake (Leah’s birthday cake flavor of choice, as seen in SHIFT).  Now for a recipe from an equally pivotal scene, in RECAST (and around Drake’s parents’ dinner table this time): Paella.

Drake’s mother, Samantha, is from Spain, so it makes sense that Paella would be in her repertoire of recipes. Landlocked as they are in Arizona, she makes hers without seafood the majority of the time, but that’s neither here nor there.  I live in Western Washington, so we have no shortage of seafood; needless to say, ours followed the recipe 😉 (The picture at the top of this post is a pic I took on my phone of the paella we made (pretty, right?)–you can even see my messy cooktop in the background, lol!)

This recipe comes from the cookbook The Chew: Food. Life. Fun., and can also be found online, here. The hubby and I made it earlier this year and it turned out great.  If you give this a try, comment or send me a message and let me know how it turned out!

  • 5 cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Spanish Onion (chopped)
  • 2 cup Short-grain Rice
  • Saffron Threads (large pinch)
  • 1 1/2 cup San Marzano Tomatoes (drained and halved)
  • 8 Chicken Thighs and Drumsticks (4 of each)
  • 1/2 pound Dried Chorizo
  • 12 Mussels (debearded and scrubbed)
  • 12 Littleneck Clams (scrubbed)
  • 1 1/2 pound Large Shrimp
  • 1 cup Frozen Peas
  • 1/4 cup Flat-Leaf Parsley (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup White wine
step-by-step directions
  • In a paella pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chorizo and cook until cooked through and it has rendered its fat. Remove chorizo from pan and reserve.
  • Add the chicken, browning all sides. Remove the chicken from pan and reserve.
  • Add the onion and cook until translucent.
  • Add the rice and toast. Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Once rice has toasted, and the saffron and then slowly add the stock, stirring as you add.
  • Add the tomatoes and stir. Nestle the chicken in the pan and arrange the mussels, clams, shrimp, peas, and cover the pan. Cook, covered until clams and mussels have opened and rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Garnish with freshly cracked pepper and some parsley. Serve.

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