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National Spanish Paella Day!

TODAY we celebrate a favorite seafood dish known in Spain, the Spanish Paella.

Spanish Paella is a traditional dish from the Valencia region of Spain. It is a rice dish that typically includes saffron, chicken, rabbit, and seafood, although there are many variations of the dish that include other meats, vegetables, and spices.

The origins of paella can be traced back to the 18th century when farmers in the Valencia region would cook rice dishes using ingredients that were readily available to them. Over time, these dishes evolved into modern-day paella, which is now enjoyed around the world.

There are three main types of paella: Valencian paella, which includes rabbit, chicken, and snails; seafood paella, which includes various types of seafood such as shrimp, mussels, and squid; and mixed paella, which includes both meat and seafood. Paella is typically cooked in a large, shallow pan called a paellera, which allows the rice to cook evenly and absorb the flavors of the other ingredients.

In addition to being a delicious and filling meal, paella is also a cultural symbol of Spain and is often served at festivals and celebrations. It is typically eaten for lunch or dinner and is often accompanied by a glass of wine and a salad.

While paella can be a complex dish to prepare, there are many recipes available online for those interested in trying to make it at home. Some of the key ingredients in paella, such as saffron and Spanish chorizo, can be found at specialty grocery stores or online.

In Spain, paella is often served with a side dish of alioli, a garlic mayonnaise, or with tomato and onion salad.  It is often cooked outdoors over an open flame, which adds to its rustic, traditional appeal. However, it can also be cooked indoors on a stove or in an oven.  It is a social dish that is meant to be shared among a group of people. It is typically served family-style, with everyone digging into the same pan.

In addition to being a popular dish in Spain, paella is also enjoyed in other parts of the world, particularly in Latin America and the Philippines, which have been heavily influenced by Spanish cuisine.

Overall, Spanish paella is a delicious and iconic dish that represents the rich culinary traditions of Spain. Whether you’re enjoying it at a festival in Valencia or trying your hand at making it at home, paella is a dish that is sure to impress and satisfy.