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Keep On Cookin with Nick Rabar – Perfect Paella

On this Cookin with Nick Rabar segment on the latest episode of Simply Southern New England, learn how to make the perfect Paella – Rhode Island style.

Rhode Island Style

Nick Rabar

00:06 What’s up everybody we’re here on the east side of my Avenue in Providence to make one of my all time favorite dishes Paella. So while there are certainly characteristics of Paella that make a traditional, it’s one of those dishes that have been done 1000 different ways since the beginning of time. And while it may have originated in Valencia, Spain, today we’re making it Rhode Island style. What makes us Rhode Island is the fact that we’re using an abundance of fresh local seafood such as these clams here from Narragansett lobster and shrimp from right off our coasts and beautiful calamari that I marinated with chilies and citrus. So in this pan over a medium high heat, we’re going to go with some Spanish olive oil, and then we’re going to start with some sweet onions. Next, I’ve got some chopped bell pepper, as well as some cubanelle peppers. Now we’re going to add in some chorizo sausage. This is locally made right here in Rhode Island, by my buddies at Gastro Meats. It is fabulously smoke. Let’s hit it with a pinch of salt and some fresh cracked pepper.

Flavor Build

1:10 – Now, we’re gonna let that sauté for about four to five minutes. See Paella is about building flavors little by little by little and cooking things at certain times. Also, you can’t throw everything in the pan It doesn’t work that way with this dish. Now let’s hit it with some garlic important ingredient, but also important not to put it in too early if you don’t want that garlic to burn before everything else is caramelized. Alright, so now I’ve got a little tomato product here, which is simply just a little plain canned, tomato, unseasoned,  and that’s going to hidden say this all together, pulls all those ingredients together. Oh my goodness, that’s incredible. By now that all of that is pulled together, we’re going to go in with the star of the show the rice.


1:58 I’m using an Arborio rice here, and you can use literally any kind you want. So now what we’re going to do is we’re going to hit it with a little bit of broth. Oh, the crowd goes wild. What you want is about two parts broth, the one part rice, we’re gonna go in with a must have this is a Paella a MUST HAVE THIS IS saffron,  saffron is going to make that rice, that beautiful signature yellow. Now what we’re going to do is start to put in some of the seafood. So I’ve got this Point Judith calamari here, mostly the tubes, but just a little bit of tentacles now is when we want to go in with these beautiful Rhode Island clams, I’m going to go in with about eight little ones . So what we’re going to do here and this is where it gets fun, is we’re going to put a lid on it. Okay, that is going to trap in all of that liquid that’s been evaporating so that the clams steam open and the rice stays nice and moist. Come on, you can see these clams starting to pop open. And now we’re going to go on with some of these shrimp.

3:11 This looking great. There’s an old expression if you’re looking at ain’t cooking, but you know what I can’t contain myself, I have to take a peek. Oh, man, that looks incredible. So the shrimp are starting to turn into that beautiful signature orange trim color, and now I’ve fully cooked these lobster tails. So we don’t want to put them on too early. Or they’re going to get tough, but I’m going to go with some of these claws and bury them right underneath, and then put a lid on it. Two more minutes. Oh man, everything is looking so good. Now here’s an important step. It’s a boring step, but it’s still important. Put the lid on and turn it off. Okay, we’re going to let it rest because the rice is going to carry over cook and all of those flavors are going to come together beautifully and we’re going to be able to see that nice caramelization on the bottom. Alright, so it’s been resting. It’s been carrying over. That steam has done its job. The clams are perfectly open. The shrimp is perfectly cooked than the lobster has been reheated. Let’s go to the bowls here. This is as good as pie gets. So it wouldn’t be me if I didn’t put my signature on this here.

Tomato & Olive Jam

4:28 -I made a beautiful tomato and olive jam. It’s green olives, tomatoes, fennel, capers, it’s an enormous amount of flavor. What’s like without a little texture, I made some garlic bread crumbs, and of course, you got to have a little color pop add a little flavor. I’m going to go on with some nicely cut green onions. This has to be one of the greatest things I think we’ve ever made here, on  Keep on Cookin. I got one for me. I’ve got one for you as well. You know, I love you guys. Thanks for another fun day and until we meet again, keep on cooking.

Wine Pairing

Matt – 05:17 Hey everyone. My name is Matt. I’m here at the Wines More here in Walpole, Massachusetts. We’re here for another perfect pairing chef Nick’s seafood Paella. Today we have Don and Sons Sonoma Valley Chardonnay, this is a 100% Chardonnay from the southernmost region of the Sonoma Valley. And on the nose, you’re going to have a lot of notes of apple, pear, apricots, butter, oak, and those kind of fill through them the mouthfeel a lot of oakyness, butteryness, creaminess, this is not a overly oaky or buttery Chardonnay and this is going to pair well and bring all those flavors together, and make a  wonderful, wonderful dish. A perfect send off to  summer. So come on down to the Wines & More here in Walpole, Massachusetts. Try Don & Son yourself. Cheers.

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