Had a post of his fall Paella cook get bumped to the top again, and I saw it a few days ago. It was a wonderful post with a lot of detail and I haven't stopped thinking about paellas since then. I've probably made 50 or 60 paellas, either in the oven or on my gas grill, but I have yet to make one on the BGE. This changes tomorrow.
Today I went out to test fit my 16 inch stainless steel paella pan and I was very pleased to see I have options. I found if I use my Spider with the legs on top of the fire ring instead of in the notches, It raises the handle so they are right at the level of the gasket and they barely touch the inside of the lid seam. This means I have choices. I can cook the paella lid up the whole time, or at the end when the rice and the broth simmer together for 15 minutes, I can cover it up and put the lid down. I think the lid just about closes all the way, there may be a slight gap, but not much. So my question is this: I do want tu use some wood chips to give some smoke flavor to this paella, so I'm wondering do I finish it with the lid up or lid down. I have seen paellas cooked on a charcoal grill with the lid up the entire time, but there was no mention about the presence or lack of smoke flavor. I haven't made my mind up on what I'm going to do yet. I'd really like some feedback from those of you who made paellas to let me know what you think: Should it be finished lid up or lid down and why? Also which way do you think is going to help develop the soccorat more? Thanks in advance.