How i cooked my first traditional authentic valencian Paella?

Jun 27, 2024 | Paellas

(and how you can do it, too?)

First comes first – how are you, your family and friends? I really hope all is well, as we are going through very turbulent times.

How everything started

From one day to the next, I was at my uncle’s Villa with my family and about to cook my first paella. The thing is, being born in València, “you are supposed to cook paella practically the day you are born”! My fears and worries were naturally high. It is the same for many of my fellow Valèncians. Fears and worries like: which steps are there and are they in the right order? What are the right ingredients, what are the right proportions, will I be able to prepare it, will it taste good, how long does the rice have to cook, are they going to criticize me (criticism is taken to the maximum when it comes to paella in València) ?!

So, if it happened to me and it happens to my friends, family and many others, it can happen to you as well……But there is nothing really to worry about: if any of the above rings a bell for you, then you are in the right place!

Paella cooking is something everyone can learn: what truly matters are the ingredients, the right training, and how much love you put in it!

traditional authentic Valencian Paella, a dish that unites Spaniards

There is no love sincerer than the love of food…
~George Bernard Shaw~

I was born and lived in València (Spain) until I was 22 years old. I grew up with my father, my mother and a sister five years younger than me; a time of which I have many wonderful memories and that deeply and positively affected me. What I liked most was spending time outdoors, learning from nature, either in our small orange grove or working the hives where our bees made delicious orange blossom honey.

In all those memories a paella always, always, always appeared. It is the main tradition in València to eat this national dish par excellence on Sundays and holidays, surrounded by your loved ones. Whether they are family, old friends or new friends – everyone gets involved and equally enjoys that long-awaited moment throughout the week.

It was precisely in these moments so remembered by me and that I want to share with you where, unconsciously, everything began: little by little I learned about the paellas that my elders cooked – in the garden, in the family chalet, asking, studying their movements, learning their tricks and thinking about how to improve the process. And in the end, after a few Sundays, it turns out that I was the one who cooked the paella from start to finish, without anyone objecting. On the contrary – they were delighted. But as mentioned at the beginning of this post, I was still terrified the first time I officially cooked paella.

truth about paella

Great food is like great sex. The more you have the more you want.
~Gael Greene~

For us, this sentence would be: great paellas are like great sex. The more you have, the more you want!

This passion inspired me practically every weekend, to continue making paellas for my family and friends, in my own home or in theirs, but also on many of the trips I made anywhere in the world. In New York, Taiwan, Sweden, the Dominican Republic or London, when people found out that I was from Valencia, they asked me to cook a paella for them. And not only that, some of them asked me to teach them how to cook it!. This made me think: “why don’t I show it to the rest of the world?”. So, this is how Paella Lover began. If you are interested in paella, what are you waiting for? Let’s do it!

In Paella Lover I not only share the method of cooking paellas, I love to teach how to cook paellas with passion. I share with you the history of one of the most searched recipes worldwide, right through to the moment when your guests are “wowed”, including the ingredients of the original traditional valencian paella and more – grocery shopping and selection, how to serve, how to make stock from scratch, the timings, the rice, etc. with easy instructions and videos, the right language, the best tricks, common mistakes and many other useful tips and information. Oh, and a lot of fun too! You can make a party of it, and invite some friends to join in the fun

Food can bring people together in a way nothing else could –
~Yotam Ottolenghi~

Did you like this post? There will be more coming soon! Follow me on Instagram and/or Facebook to know more about paella.

Finally, if you have any questions or comments related to my story or paella cooking, then feel free to post them in the comments section below.

Stay safe and… HAPPY PAELLA!!



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