Chicken and Olive Paella is one of many types of paella dishes that I love to make, but because you need a large flat pan that has to cook the rice evenly, I used to only really have the opportunity to cook it over a campfire.
But then I discovered this amazing Bruno Hot Plate. The plate has a lip so that it can hold liquids and it heats nice and evenly across the surface. Suddenly, I have found that I am able to prepare all types of paella – seafood, beef, and of course this amazing Chicken and Olive Paella. Of course, you can cook this in a frypan or on the stove, but it comes out perfect using the hot plate and it’s oh so easy to make.
The rice that is used for Paella is a short grained absorbent rice, similar to the Italian Arborio or Carnaroli rice that is used for risotto, but it’s usually made with a Spanish Rice known as Bomba rice. Bomba is very absorbent and the rule of thumbs is to use a 3:1 ratio of liquid to rice (3 cups of liquid for every cup of rice).
If you are substituting for a different type of rice, be very careful to check how much liquid should be used. Because Bomba rice is so absorbent, the grains are loaded with flavor after cooking. For Chicken and Olive Paella I use a rich chicken flavor consommé as the liquid to really create an intensely flavored paella.
Between the brine in the olives and the consommé there is plenty of salt. So there is no need to add additional salt to the dish. I use saffron threads for both flavor and color, although it’s not necessary to use a lot of saffron because the chicken consommé already has a nice yellowish color to it that the saffron threads subtly add to.