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Accidental turbo paella. Advice welcome!

I got a paella pan for Fathers Day, and my wife suggested that I try making it tonight.  I spent a good hour this morning researching how to make it, looking at the Naked Whiz's website, as well as here on the forum, and some YouTube videos.  I think I may have misinterpreted some directions, or something, because this was a hot, fast cook and I'm pretty sure it shouldn't be.  Here's how I did it:

-Raised direct, with the paella pan at about grid level.
-Preheated the egg to 400, and placed the pan on the grid.  I spread the coals around to make an even cooking surface.
-closed the bottom vent completely, and left the dome open.  (the entire lid was open, not just the daisy wheel)
-heated some olive oil, cooked diced sausage (andouille, since I couldn't find spanish chorizo), removed
-sauteed shrimp for about a minute per side, removed
-sauteed chicken breast for a few minutes until no longer pink inside, removed
-sauteed grated onion and garlic in oil until translucent
-added grated tomato, cooked until moisture nearly removed  (apparently this is the sofrito?)
-stirred in arborrio rice (no bomba rice at the local grocery store), 
-spread rice/sofrito mixture evenly throughout pan, cooked for a couple minutes until rice was somewhat translucent
-slowly ladled in pre-heated chicken broth/saffron mixture, which IMMEDIATELY sizzled and boiled
-gently stirred rice and liquid and left alone
-shut bottom vent, added ceramic cap to the top, essentially closing everything down. 
            -Naked Whiz's website said to try to shut everything down to about 375 during the rice cook, but my Egg was 
              at 550-600, and not going down.  The coals were way too hot, as the dome had been open the entire time. 

-after about 5 minutes, added cooked sausage, chicken, laid shrimp on top as neatly as the red-hot coals allowed me to
-also laid down red pepper slices as neatly as possible.  Still...crazy hot. 

-after about 3 minutes, all the moisture was gone.  I checked the sides to see if the soccorat was crusty, which it was.
-pulled the pan off, set it on the table, and gently covered it with aluminum foil
-after about 5 minutes, garnished with italian parsley and lemon wedges.  

I was worried that the chicken would be underdone, since it hadn't spent much time cooking.  I was also afraid that the rice hadn't cooked enough, and that the broth mixture boiled over before the rice could absorb it.  However, the rice was cooked almost perfectly, al dente with just a little snap.  The shrimp and sausage were delicious.  The soccorat was a little crusty, but didn't stay together.  It tasted great.  The only thing that wasn't right was the chicken, which was overcooked, ironically. Next time, I'll do chicken thighs instead of white meat. 

My 15 year old had three helpings.  The 13 year old ate the rest of the crusty rice from the pan.  I'd have to say it was a hit, but I'm sure I could have done something differently.  If you have any advice on what I did 

My questions: 
-Am I correct in cooking this direct?  
-Should I close the lid, or leave it open?
-Does anyone want to come over and wash this pan?  This thing will be soaking for a while. 


Thanks for any help!


LBGE since June 2012

Omaha, NE

Comments

  • DMWDMW Posts: 13,392
    edited July 2015
    Looks good, everyone enjoyed, that's what counts.

    As far as done open goes, only for the sauteing. As soon as you are done with that, dome closed.
    Morgantown, PA

    XL BGE - S BGE - KJ Jr - HB Legacy - BS Pizza Oven - 30" Firepit - King Kooker Fryer -  PR72T - 18.5" WSM - WSJ - BS 17" Griddle - XXL BGE - Akron Jr - BS SS36" Griddle
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