How to Make the Perfect Paella and Sangria with Doña Elena? (Photo Essay)

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Once you have the right ingredients, a good recipe, and the proper techniques, you can also make your own paella and sangria at home this Christmas season. 

Here’s a photo essay of how to make your own perfect Paella and Sangria with Doña Elena


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New World Manila Bay Hotel Executive Chef James Williams taught us how to cook the perfect Paella Mixta and prepare our own Sangria during the Taste of Spain: Spanish Cooking Class with Doña Elena.

The lovely Bianca King hosted the event, which was led by Lucio Cochanco, Jr., President of the Fly Ace Corporation.


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75 ml Doña Elena olive oil
200g chicken thighs, marinated in: 1/4 tsp. paprika, 1 tsp. olive oil, salt and pepper
1 pc. onions, finely sliced
4 pcs. garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 pc. capsicum, cut into strips
125g tomatoes, crushed
50g tomato paste,
salt and pepper to taste
600g bomba rice, washed
15 pcs. saffron threads, soaked in 1/4 cup boiling water
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1.2 L boiling hot chicken and/or seafood broth, mixed with 1 tsp. paprika, salt and pepper
15 pcs.squid, sliced in rings
10 pcs. prawns
3 pcs. cooked whole crabs, cut into bite-size pieces
15 pcs. cooked clams or 16-20 pieces fresh clams
15 pcs. cooked mussels

35g green peas
40g olives
10pcs. lemon wedges
2 tsp Italian parsley, finely chopped


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Doña Elena is the consistent no. 1 Olive Oil brand in the Philippines and a proudly homegrown Filipino company.  

The olive oil uses a combination of the Hojiblanca and Picual olive varieties predominant in Spain. The olives are directly sourced and harvested from the farms of Andalucia in Spain whose olive trees trace back their rich history to 3,500 years BC. 

There are three types of Doña Elena Olive Oils used for cooking:

1. Extra Virgin is the highest quality of oil extracted from the first press of the olive containing 80% monounsaturated oleic oil and the lowest free fatty acid. This olive oil is used for salad dressings, bread dips, and drizzling on cooked food. 

2. Pure Olive Oil is the olive oil good for sautéing and frying, which we used for the cooking of the Paella. 

3. Pomace is the olive oil extracted from the pulp after the first press that can be used for everyday frying and deep-frying. 


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In a paella pan, heat 50ml Doña Elena Pure Olive Oil and sauté chicken until skin turns brown. Set aside.


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In the same pan, sauté onions…


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…then add garlic and capsicum. Cook for 1-2 minutes.


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Add crushed tomatoes, then sauté for another 2 minutes.


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Add in tomato paste & stir until all ingredients are coated. Add Doña Elena olive oil if needed.


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Tomato paste must be cooked until color darkens but not burned.


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Sprinkle smoked paprika. Mix until it is evenly distributed. Season with salt and pepper.


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Pour seafood broth onto the saffron.


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Pour the saffron liquid and mix.


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Place rice & sauté until translucent…


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…constantly stirring for a few minutes.


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Control your pan temperature. This will take a while.


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Then add the broth.


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Note: Don’t worry if all the broth cannot fit at this point, the balance can be added later.


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From this point, the cooking time is approximately 20-25 minutes until all the liquid has been absorbed.


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Do not stir. From high to medium heat, turn heat to low once the liquid has evaporated.


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Once rice is almost cooked, add the squid and prawns.


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Lay out the prawns alternately with the squid rings on top of the rice.


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Cover and wait until prawns and squid are cooked.


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Add remaining ingredients evenly…


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…and decoratively over the skillet in the following order: clams, mussels, and crab, olives, and green peas.


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Cover with foil and let it sit for 15 minutes.


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To serve, remove foil, sprinkle with parsley, and decorate with lemon wedges.



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1 pc. orange, sliced
2 pcs. lemon, sliced
1 pc. lime, sliced
1 pc. apple, sliced
750m red wine
60 ml brandy
30ml simple syrup and soda water


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Put all the sliced fruits into the pitcher.


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Add Doña Elena sweet red wine, brandy, and sugar.


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Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate for a least 1 hour or overnight.


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When about to serve, top it up with soda water.


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Stir and pour into individual glasses with scoops of ice cubes. Enjoy!


Live an Awesome Life,



Disclosure: Our cooking lesson was courtesy of Doña Elena with recipes from New World Manila Bay Hotel. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. 

P.S. Watch out for our Doña Elena feature with Mrs Awesome Planet and Bianca King as we visit the olive farms in Spain!

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