Hello, I am looking at a recipe for Paella with chorizo, seafood and chicken as the main ingredients. Would I be using dried or fresh chorizo???
There is a Mexican fresh chorizo and a Spanish chorizo. The Mexican version is not the one you want; its consistancy is more like ground meat or breakfast sausage. I have used a couple of kinds of Spanish chorizo. One was like salami and one was more like andoille or kielbasa. Both worked fine, but I preferred the latter.
I have always used fresh chorizo but my new favorite is merguez.
You can use either but make sure you use Spanish chorizo and not Mexican or Portuguese. If you have to substitute, Portuguese Linguica is probably the closest match. Spanish chorizo is flavored with paprika, other varieties use different spices.
What you really want is a "semi-cured" Spanish chorizo if you are going to be cooking it. The harder versions don't cook up as well. I would suggest a chorizo Bilbao which you can order on line from La Espanola Meats www.donajuana.com They make their own regional style Spanish chorizo and cured meats in their own plant. If you want to include jamon serrano in your paella you can also order that through them---not to mention pimenton and saffron.