Seafood paella nests

Rachel Khoos beautiful seafood nests are easy to recreate, the secret is in the muffin tin
By Rachel Khoo
Seafood paella nests
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, peeled, halved and finely sliced
  • 1 small fennel, trimmed and finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
  • 140 g vermicelli noodles
  • butter, for greasing
  • 1 chorizo sausage, chopped into thin rounds
  • 150 ml white wine
  • 1 genorous pinch of saffron
  • 750 ml fish stock
  • 200 g monkfish or cod cheeks
  • 250 g unshelled raw king prawns
  • 150 g purple sprouting broccoli, stalks and tops separated
  • 600 g mixture of clams and mussels, prepared and cleaned


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Heat the oil in a large lidded pan and sweat the onion, fennel and garlic down for 10 minutes on a medium to low heat.

2. Put the noodles in a bowl and pour boiling water over them, leave for about 45 seconds until they just pliable enough but still have bite. Drain and spread out on a clean tea towel to get rid of the excess moisture. Pat dry with another tea towel until they are really dry. Brush the 6 holes of a deep muffin tin with the knobs of butter and line the holes with the noodles. Make sure to push noodles right to the top of the muffin hole (they will shrink slightly). Place in the oven for 30 minutes, or until crisp and golden.

3. Meanwhile, add the chorizo to the pan with the onion, fennel and garlic and fry uncovered until golden for 8-10 minutes. Add the white wine, saffron and simmer down for a minute before adding the stock. Bring to the boil.

4. Add the cheeks, prawns and broccoli stalks and stir through the sauce. Simmer for one minute, then add the mussels, clams and the tops of the broccoli. Toss through the sauce and place the lid on and crank up the heat. Cook for 3 minutes with a lid on.

5. Remove the lid, strain the stew through a colander over a large bowl. Return the liquid to the pan and simmer for about 20 minutes until reduced to the desired consistency (you can make it a broth or a rich sauce).

6. Pick some of the mussels and clams out of the shells of the fish stew and discard them in the meantime, keeping the fish stew warm while the reducing finished.

7. Remove the vermicelli from the oven and divide between large shallow bowls. Add a ladle full of the seafood to each of the nests, then pour the sauce over to top. Arrange the fish and broccoli tops around the edge of the nests.

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