What is a quick easy dinner I can make in one pan? is a question most often asked of me. While I know the expected answer is a recipe, they’d be asking the wrong person for a recipe. I’ve been urging people to “Burn Your Recipes” through my online cooking classes and DVDs for years now, motivating them to cook with basic cooking methods over written instructions, and Seafood Paella is no different.

While aspiring chefs and home cooks love to ask me questions, some also tell me I talk too much. If you remember “Cooking Coarse”, my original cooking video series on YouTube, you’ll remember episodes that included much of my well-spoken philosophies that lasted 8 to 10 minutes sometimes. For those that love new methods of cooking without recipes, and don’t want to hear me talk, I created the Food iPod.

The shuffle function lands on Maroon 5 as I start to create my Seafood Paella in one pan. It’s a basic sauté method that will also call upon my knowledge of gelatinization of starches as well. That’s to say how rice absorbs liquid and swells during cooking. This dish is a perfect quick easy dinner because we can accomplish both of these goals in the same pan.

Once I’m sure that the pan is hot by sprinkling a little water on it to evaporate, I’ll add a small amount of olive oil, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. The addition of dry rice, onions, peppers, garlic, shrimp, sausage, chicken, tomatoes, shrimp stock and tomato juice will all cook together at the same time.

The advantage of this type of cooking is that you are cooking with steam and moisture to cook delicate items. Often, a Seafood Paella can be ruined by high heat that makes the seafood rubbery and the vegetables limp. But, as the ingredients cook in a moist fashion, they also perspire liquids that are absorbed into the rice as the starches gelatinize. This gives a great consistent flavor throughout.

The perfect seasoning for this Spanish staple is saffron. It’s perfect because saffron threads must be steeped in liquid to best use their flavor. Nobody sprinkles saffron on a dish like salt. It’s best macerated in the liquid over time. Plus, it IS the signature flavor of a great paella.

Seafood Paella is a great example of a quick easy dinner that you can make in one pan. It needn’t be made with seafood either. When you cook with basic cooking methods, you can use any ingredients you desire. This method is one worth repeating in your own home.

Seafood Paella is a Quick Easy Dinner is also a video. Watch it HERE

Author's Bio: 

Chef Todd Mohr is a classically trained chef, entrepreneur, cooking educator and founder of WebCookingClasses. You CAN learn to cook without written recipes by taking his FREE cooking class that will change the way you think about cooking forever!