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Pettigrew's Paella

Pettigrew's Paella
Pettigrew's Paella

This classic Spanish recipe is loved by many, mastered by few. However, Henry’s Dad has made a good effort and passed the recipe down proudly from father to son. Introducing this incredible vegan paella recipe.

Paella should never be stirred - unlike risotto, the rice needs to stay firm and not sticky. The lemon wedges served on every plate to be squeezed over before eating are absolutely nonnegotiable!

This really is a wonderful vegan dinner party idea or Saturday night dinner recipe! Such a treat to the tastebuds and a really sociable dish. Your guests will LOVE YOU for it.

Like this? Get the full written recipe in the BOSH! Cookbook



  • 1 large red pepper
  • 200g tinned butter beans
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 medium tomato (about 115g)
  • 150g fine green beans
  • 10 sprouting broccoli stems
  • 200g tinned artichoke hearts
  • generous pinch of saffron
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1⁄2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 litre good-quality vegetable stock
  • 280g paella rice
  • 1–2 lemons
  • salt and black pepper


  1. 1.

    Grill on high, or griddle on the highest heat | Baking tray | Large frying or paella pan | Pestle and mortar (or use a mug and teaspoon) | Kettle boiled | Clean tea towels

    Cut the pepper in half and cut out the stem and seeds | Lay the pieces on the baking tray under a hot grill, skin side up (or on a hot griddle, skin side down) and heat until the skin blackens | Transfer to a plastic bag and seal inside | Leave to cool, then remove and remove the skin | Cut the flesh into 11⁄2cm strips

    Meanwhile, drain the butter beans | Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic | Finely chop the tomato | Trim the green beans and cut off the heads of the broccoli | Cut the beans and broccoli stems only into 1–2cm pieces | Quarter the artichoke hearts | Set all the chopped veggies aside for later

    Put the saffron threads in the dry frying or paella pan and place it on a medium heat | Let it warm for about 1 minute to dry the saffron, then transfer to a mortar | Add a generous pinch of salt and pound with the pestle to grind them together

    Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the pan along with the red pepper | Cook for 10–15 minutes, turning occasionally, until the peppers are soft but not browned | Remove from the pan and set aside about 6 strips | Cut the rest into 1–2cm pieces

    Add the onion to the pan along with the remaining tablespoon oil | Cook for 10–15 minutes, until the onion has softened and browned a little, stirring occasionally | Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes | Add the tomato and cook for about 10 minutes more, stirring from time to time, until the tomato pieces turn mushy | Stir in the salty saffron threads, paprika, turmeric and a generous pinch of black pepper | Add the stock to the pan, turn up the heat and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium

    Stir in the green beans, butter beans, artichoke and red pepper pieces (reserving the strips) | Increase the heat to bring the pan back to a simmer, then lower to medium | Taste the paella liquid – it should have a good ‘stock’ taste that’s a little too salty, so add a little more salt to the pan if necessary

    Sprinkle the rice evenly over the pan | Bring it back to the boil, then reduce the heat to a fast simmer (medium-high) | Continue to simmer for 5 minutes without stirring | If you are using a large pan on a smaller burner you may need to move the pan around on the burner occasionally so that the rice cooks evenly across the pan

    Decorate the surface of the paella with the red pepper strips and broccoli florets | Continue to cook without stirring for 10 minutes | Turn the broccoli a few times so that it cooks through, and check that the rice is still evenly distributed – you might need to use a spoon to move the rice in the pan

    After 10 minutes, test the rice by biting a few grains | They should be translucent but al dente | If the pan starts to dry out before the rice is cooked, add 100ml boiling water by drizzling it through a strainer over the surface of the mixture (don’t just pour it in) | If there is a lot of liquid visible when the rice is nearly cooked, consider either spooning some off or turning up the heat (a little bit of burning at the bottom of the pan is not considered a bad thing – the Valencians call it ‘socarrat’, and treasure it)

    Once the rice is cooked enough, give it a last short burst of heat to get any remaining liquid really bubbling, then turn off the heat and cover the top of the pan with foil and a couple of clean tea towels | Leave it for 10–15 minutes – this improves the taste and texture and allows the rice to absorb any excess stock | Cut the lemons into wedges and serve alongside the paella