Spain's national dish originated in Valenciana, Spain and is cooked in the shallow two-handled black paellero pan. Saffron is essential to the flavor and is the world's most expensive spice by weight, yet is not that expensive to use. The 3 orange-red stigmas must picked by hand from inside the purple petalled "crocus sativus" flower. Spanish Mancha Saffron may be purchased for around $55 for 1 ounce (28.35 grams) or as little as $5 for .5 grams from The Baker’s Catalogue.

    1 ˝ cups uncooked long grain rice
    3 cups boiling water
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
    1 tablespoon chicken base
    ˝ teaspoon seasoning salt
    ˝ teaspoon dried oregano
    ⅛ teaspoon Spanish saffron powder
    1 dried bay leaf
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    ˝ pound spicy sausage
    1 cut-up fryer chicken, skin removed
    ˝ cup chopped red onion
    2 garlic cloves, crushed in a garlic press
    1 (2-ounce) jar sliced pimiento, drained and finely chopped
    8 large shrimp (21-30 per pound), unpeeled

1.  Preheat the oven to 400 .

2.  Set out a 4-quart casserole with lid.

3.  Measure the rice, water, parsley, chicken base, salt, oregano,
     saffron and bay leaf into casserole dish. Stir well with a
     metal utensil as wood will absorb the saffron color.

4.  In a 5-quart sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat
     and fry sausage and chicken until browned or about 15
     minutes; set on top of rice mixture. Do not stir.

5.  Fry onion and garlic in the same pan. Spoon over chicken,     
     letting most of the onion fall into the liquid. Sprinkle with  
     pimiento, cover and bake in a preheated oven 30 minutes.

6.  Remove the lid, cook an additional 15 minutes. Cover with
     lid and let the casserole sit for 15 minutes on the stove top.

7.  In the meantime, fry the shrimp until shells turn a vivid
     orange/pink. Arrange the shrimp around edge of casserole.
     Serve immediately.

     Makes 4 servings