Nadia and Kaye Disaster Chef Pretend Paella recipe

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  • Healthy
serves: 4 - 4
Skill: easy
Cost: mid
Prep: 20 min
Cooking: 15 min
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  • Nadia and Kaye’s Pretend Paella, taken from their cookbook Disaster Chef, is the perfect replacement if you’re looking for an easier version of the classic Paella. Kaye says: ‘I wanted Nadia to devise me a recipe for something like a paella, but not a paella, because that would be far too much faff. There’s still a lot of chopping in this, but that’s what 10-year-olds are for. We wouldn’t want a new generation of Disaster Chefs, would we?’


    • 2–3 tbsp olive oil
    • 2 onions, sliced
    • 3 medium tomatoes, cut into 8
    • 3–6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    • 300g (10oz) basmati rice
    • pinch of saffron threads
    • 1 heaped tsp smoked paprika (optional)
    • 150ml (5fl oz) dry sherry or white wine
    • 400ml (14fl oz) hot fish stock (from a cube is fine)
    • 400g pack of frozen seafood mix
    • 100g (3½oz) frozen peas
    • lemon wedges, to serve
    • handful of chopped parsley leaves, to serve


    • Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat.

    • Add the onions and garlic, and cook for 2–3 minutes, stirring, until softened. Nadia’s tip: Don’t let the onions get crispy

    • Add the tomatoes and stir.

    • Add the rice, saffron, and paprika (if using), and stir for 1 minute. Pour in the sherry or wine. Increase the heat to bring up to the bubble for 1 minute, stirring to burn off the alcohol, then reduce the heat to medium.

    • Add the stock and seafood mix, cover, and simmer very gently for 15 minutes over a low heat, or until the rice and fish are cooked. Add the peas 3 minutes before the end. Don’t stir.

    • When the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed, you’re ready to go, with a good squeeze from the lemon wedges, and a flourish of chopped parsley.

      Credit: Nadia and Kaye Disaster Chef by Nadia Sawalha and Kaye Adams. Published by DK (£20).

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