1 Because paella cooks rather quickly, it's very important to have all of your ingredients prepared in advance and ready to go into the pan.
2 Pierre started by coating the large paella pan with olive oil and cooking chicken legs and thighs, seasoned with paprika and salt, until golden brown on all sides - about 8 minutes.
3 Your charcoal grill should be good and hot and bigger than your paella pan.
4 When the chicken was nicely brown, Pierre then added 2 pounds of pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces.
5 The pork was turned and browned for a few minutes. A second paella pan was used to saute chopped onion, garlic, and red and green bell pepper strips to garnish the finished masterpiece.
6 For extra flavor, Pierre added some mild sliced chorizo sausage. Made with pork and seasoned with paprika, which gives it a characteristic flavor, chorizo is eaten throughout Spain and is often an ingredient in paella.
7 Paella originated in the fields of a region called Valencia on the eastern coast of Spain.
8 At lunch time, field workers prepared a rice dish over an open fire using a flat pan. They mixed in any ingredients at hand, such as vegetables, rabbit, chicken, and snails.
9 The onions, garlic, and peppers were added to the pan.
10 Today, paella is made in every region of Spain using many different ingredients. I've sampled many recipes and this one, incorporating meat, shellfish, and vegetables is one of my favorites.
11 The next ingredient added to the mix was 8 large ripe tomatoes, which had been peeled, seeded, and chopped.
12 Pierre stirred to incorporate the vegetables.
13 It's getting so colorful!
14 Sarah Mastracco, who used to work in my TV prep kitchen, helps Pierre whenever possible.
15 It was time to start adding the seafood. These are jumbo shrimp that have been peeled and deveined.
16 Pierre also added the calamari, which was cleaned and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch rings.
17 Everything was getting heated through nicely.
18 It was time to add the rice. For paella, it's a good idea to use a Spanish rice, either Bomba or Calasparra, short-grained rice which easily absorbs all the amazing flavors of paella. This type of rice has been used in Spanish paellas for centuries.
19 Pierre stirred to submerge the rice down in between the ingredients.
20 He then added the magic ingredient - saffron! 2 tablespoons of saffron was ground in a mortar and pestle with 1 tablespoon of salt and then whisked into 2 cups of hot chicken stock and 3/4 cup of cognac. Saffron offers great yellow color and amazing flavor.
21 Pierre also added the remaining chicken broth. For 4 cups of rice, a total of 8 cups of broth was used. From this point on, the paella cooks for another 15 - 20 minutes.
22 Pierre let everything cook for about 10 minutes.
23 Guests love watching paella being made this way. The process is fascinating.
24 Next, the mussels were placed on top.
25 And then the clams
26 Pierre added a bit more chicken stock.
27 And a sprinkling of salt
28 The mussels and clams were beginning to open. The whole cooking process on the grill takes about 35 minutes.
29 The fantastic finished paella! Haricot verts and green peas were added towards the end of cooking. It was utterly delicious!
30 Another evening in Maine, we had a great lobster dinner, which was prepared on this outdoor cooker.
31 There is a great abundance of lobsters in the Maine coastal waters.
32 The lobsters, about 1 1/2-pounds each, were lowered into a boiling cauldron of water.
33 The lobster feast included corn on the cob. When boiling many ears of corn, this basket is a very handy device.
34 The ears of corn are stacked in the basket and easily lowered into the boiling water.
35 There they simmer for a few minutes while the lobster is cooking.
36 The corn basket lifts right out of the water.
37 The lobsters were perfectly cooked after 12 minutes in the boiling water.