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Paella, with a seemingly endless number of varieties, is a rice lovers dream. It begins with a sofrito to which short grain rice and saffron are added. Cooked traditionally over open flame in a paellera, a good paella acquires a characteristic toasted bottom crust knows as the soccarat. To achieve the soccarat, the ingredients are spread evenly in a thin layer across the pan, allowing them to cook through (unstirred). Paella is a meal meant to be shared straight from the pan and provides you with a great excuse to make new friends while traveling in Spain. This king of one-pot meals hails from Valencia but has become popular throughout the country.
Where to find paella
Valencia: Restaurante Levante has mastered the paella Valenciana and is happy to feed you or, should it spark your curiosity, even teach you how to make their signature dish.
Barcelona: Not only does the family run Can Majo boast some of the freshest seafood in Barcelona, it also has one of the most coveted seaside terraces around.