Paella with Saffron Pasta


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As I mention over and over again, I am a bit of a spoiled cook. This is mostly because when it comes to gift giving time the husband is generally at a loss so he reverts to buying me things for the kitchen. This is generally to his benefit as I love to cook and it allows me to play and come up with recipes like paella with saffron pasta.

Saffron is, if I am not mistaken, the world’s most expensive spice. I do not have it in my pantry at all times but when I splurge I do enjoy experimenting with it. This recipe was a real winner and celebrates both the beautiful color the saffron brings to a dish and its singular flavor.


Saffron Pasta

For the Saffron Pasta
12 oz 00 Italian Flour or All Purpose Flour plus more as needed
1 tsp salt
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
1/4 tsp crushed saffron mixed with 2 TBS warm water

For the Paella Pasta
12 large shrimp
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
8 oz chicken broth
2 tsp olive oil
half of a small onion, diced
1 bay leaf
1 TBS paprika
1 TBS dried basil
I 1/2 cups broccoli florets, roasted
salt to taste

Make the saffron pasta:

  • Crush the saffron very finely and add to the warm water and let sit.
  • Whisk the flour and salt together in a bowl and make a well in the center.
  • Break the eggs into the center, add the egg yolk and stir with a fork until mixed.
  • Add the saffron water.
  • Slowly mix in the flour to the liquid in the center until it is all combined and you have a dough ball.
  • Sprinkle some flour on your counter top and remove the dough ball and knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth.
  • Wrap in plastic and let sit for half an hour to rest.
  • Cut the dough in half and return half to the plastic wrap and refrigerate for later use.

Make the Paella Pasta:

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  • Preheat the oven to 400°
  • Grease a baking pan and add the broccoli. Sprinkle with salt. Let bake for 20 minutes.
  • I chose fusilli as the shape for my paella pasta but any shape would be good.
  • To use this dough in the KitchenAid pasta press it needs to be just a little bit stiffer than it is at this point so you need to add about 1/4 cup of flour to the dough by just slowly kneading it in.
  • Once you have done this make walnut sized balls and set them aside.
  • Attach the pasta press to your mixer and start it on speed 3
  • Add a couple of pasta balls to the press and push them down with the provided tool.
  • I cut the fusilli at about an inch but I will be honest and say that some are bigger and some are smaller.
  • After you cut them place them on a wire rack to dry as you cut the rest.

Make the Paella Pasta:

  • Remove the tails from the shrimp – and the other shell if you are lucky enough to have it. Set aside.
  • Cut the shrimp into bit sized pieces and add to a bowl.
  • Sprinkle the basil and paprika over the shrimp and mix well. Set aside.
  • Heat a large saute pan over medium high heat.
  • Add the olive oil and the onion.
  • Cook the onion until it starts to brown – be careful to not burn it.
  • Add the shrimp tails and swirl in the heat. Lower the heat to medium.
  • Add the tomato sauce and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and add the bay leaf.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • While waiting for the water to boil remove the bay leaf and shrimp tails from the tomato broth and let is simmer gently.
  • Turn the heat to low and add the shrimp. Stir and let them cook. Add the roasted broccoli.
  • When the water reaches a boil add the fusilli and cook for about three minutes.
  • Remove the cooked fusilli to the pan with the tomato broth and shrimp.
  • Gently stir to mix in the fusilli. Let cook for two minutes.
  • Remove from the heat, cover and let sit for 8 minutes.
  • Enjoy!

How Was the Saffron Pasta?

Well, this is going to be totally dependent on whether you like the flavor of saffron or not. I fully recognize that it is one of those tastes that is either loved or hated. Here we love it. Not that it get used a lot due to its cost but when I do use it, it is very much appreciated.


And it is in meals like this that I think the flavor really shines. For some reason saffron and pasta just pair beautifully together. As I wrote in the recipe notes section this meal is much simplified by just using a good quality, plain fusilli and that makes it a much easier meal to prepare.

But if you want to go all out and really put the saffron flavor forward, this is the way to do it if you have the pasta press. If you do not you can get a similar effect by making hand cut fettuccine (I made a simple saffron fettuccine in tomato broth with the attachment) or use another type of pasta maker.

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