Posts Tagged ‘authentic paella in nashville’

MY PAELLA TRAVELS aka Lisa Mays Creates a Unique Culinary Experience with Customized Spanish Paellas that are Edible Works of Art!

Edible Art for the eyes and your palate.

This is my Happy Place!



Do you love paella as much as I do?

For over 25 years, I have been cooking and working on creating the very best paella experience to cook for friends and family. Though out these years, I have experimented with ingredients that would create the most authentic paella available to the Nashville area and ….NOW I can say that My Paella Travels will bring to you the most authentic paella experience available from Texas to Tennessee and every state in between.

My paellas are customized for you while maintaining authenticity and quality. I use only the freshest ingredients available.

Oh! Did I mention that my paellas are Nashville-inspired?  

I use fresh local sausages made for my paellas as well as fresh southern shrimp, clams, mussels and local Tennessee pork?

Not a seafood fan?

That’s okay, too! My Paella Travels will customize a paella to your palate.

Up to 60 guests…My Customized Paella Experiences will Travel to You!




10 2016

Chef José Andreś-Inspired Chicken, Mushroom and Sausage Paella in my Lodge Carbon Steel Paella Pan & Tapas Paired with Ribera Del Douro Wine is the Perfect Meal for Weekends

Paella de Pollo y Setas (Chicken and Mushroom Paella) with Camarón Tapas and Fresh Green Salad

15 inch Lodge Carbon Steel Paella Pan


(photos by

Usually, I teach paella cooking classes but this time I was the student. Our local Williams Sonoma was featuring paella this month and I couldn’t resist experiencing other recipes for paella because I always learn something new and ways to add new flavor profiles to my paellas.

The ingredients for this type of paella was pretty straight forward but I couldn’t resist on adding my signature touches to make it my own.

When, I am creating a custom paella for 6 people, I always use my 15 inch Lodge Paella Pan. I love it! It cooks the paella perfectly, helps ensure the crusty socarrat rice crust and finish it off in the oven.

A fresh, well-made broth is the key to the foundation of creating a flavorful and authentic paella. The best part of this class was the mushroom broth. Fill a stock pot with your favorite (homemade) chicken stock (or water ) and fill it with a package of a variety of fresh mushrooms (sliced), carrots, celery, onions, fresh thyme. Add your favorite spices and salt and pepper, too. I prefer the combination of chicken stock and mushrooms for more flavor in the stock. Flavor and aromas should be the most important consideration in creating the best paellas ever, including the stock!

Locally made sausages are a big deal here in Nashville because they are amazing so I include some of the best around. Find your local butcher to add a touch of your area in each bite. This is so important. If your a lucky enough to find a locally made Spanish-style chorizo in your area, use it!


The Chicken Mushroom Paella by José Andrés that was posted in Wine Enthusiast Magazine is a nice recipe on its own, which inspired me to take it to another level by adding a few ingredients that you like with elevate the flavor profiles and the bright colors will catch your eye.

Green peas, red and yellow pepper strips and lemons added near the end of the cooking add color contrast and interesting flavors and textures you will enjoy.


There is nothing better than a big bowl full of flavorful paella with a perfectly formed soccorat (rice crust) and with a bottle of full-bodied Ribera del Duoro near by. Fuentespina Seleccion 2011 is a classic example of the luscious 100% Tempranillos from the Ribera de Duoro region of Spain. Wines from this area are very diverse and flavors of plum and strawberries that pair well with dishes with layers of flavors including sausages and chicken.


The tapas is an-seared shrimp with olive oil, salt and pepper with Curry Mayo with lime. Mix 1 cup mayo with 1 tablespoon of Madras curry powder, honey to taste, lime juice to taste. Serve with a bubbly glass of Cava Rose’.


Fresh orange segments, chopped/blanched asparagus and sweet purple onion pairs very well with a paella dinner. Serve with fresh, homemade ranch dressing with fresh or dried tarragon.


08 2016

Wine with Lisa Hosts a Paella Party! The Hit of the Summer! Enjoy the Art of Cooking Spanish Paella with Lisa!

I have been sharing my passion and the art of cooking Spanish Paella with friends and family for over 20 years!


My Paella will travel to you!

 The “Culinary Performance Chef of Paella”

On any given weekend, you will find me with my very large paella pan and paella burner in someone’s backyard for a casual dinner under the moonlight for an evening of Spanish paella, tapas and wine. Lately, I’ve been hosting Paella Parties around the Nashville area. I show up with all of the ingredients ready to create one of the most authentic and delectable paellas around. Paella equals “instant party.” A paella is a communal dish meant to be shared with friends, family and celebrations. I bring that to the party!

What is Paella?

Paella is the most popular and well known dish of Spain. It is a vibrant rice dish often cooked outdoors over an open flame. The passion and spirit of Spain are reflected in its food. My paellas ingredients include Gulf shrimp, mussels, Southern clams, fresh fish, chicken, locally-sourced smoked chorizo sausage and vegetables with a rich homemade broth bursting with rich, complex flavors  There are so many different recipes for paellas that I can’t count.  Although my Paella Mixta (a mix of seafood, chicken, sausage) is the most popular, I also “custom make” just seafood, meat or even vegetarian paellas. My paella can be created to suit everyone’s palate. paella

Paella Passion

 There is something so passionate about paella; at least it’s that way for me. I am from Louisiana and of Sicilian decent by the way of the North Delta of Louisiana and Mississippi. We are referred to as the Delta Italians. My culinary skills were directly influenced  from New Orleans’ Cajun and Creole as well as the Sicilian Italian family I grew up in. I have always had the knack and passion for cooking and paella is just one of the ways I express it; Just wait until you experience it and you’ll see why I’m so passionate about the art of paella!

Paella and Jambalaya are cousins

That’s right! The Spanish explorers brought paella to Louisiana. Instead of the precious and pricey saffron, tomatoes add the color and crawfish and andouille make the signature Cajun jambalaya. 10390438_10202192090555071_4802122087320036037_n The original paellas were cooked and eaten from the paella pan out of necessity in the rice fields of Spain by the peasant farm-workers. Paellas are made with seafood if near the coastal waters or rabbit and snails if inland. Bomba rice, the special paella rice of Spain, is grown only in Spain and is an essential part of what makes an authentic paella. Some paellas are not made with rice but with thin noodles. This is a Catalan Fideuà, made with fideo (Spanish noodles). At the most recent gathering, this is what I made. It was devoured by all! 10616200_10202219415758184_7390739496721215551_n For a couple of years, I have hosted Paella Dinners at Natchez Hills Winery. What a beautiful location right outside of Nashville to enjoy the cool breeze, wines made at Natchez Hills Winery and Vineyard paired with a rich, vibrant paella. NatchezWineryPicMonkey Collage Salud Cooking School at Whole Foods in Green Hills has been another way I have been able to share my passion for paella. I teach classes on paella, tapas and cajun cuisine! As long as I have a cooking surface large enough to accommodate my pan, we are in business! WholeFoodsPaellaPicMonkey Collage Backyard Paella Parties with My Paella Travels have become very popular this summer. While I’m preparing the paella, guests enjoy the Spanish Tapas I’ve prepared, sip on wines that I have chosen and usually gather around the pan watching the performance. I have fun talking about the history of paella with guests and they always have great questions. PanPicMonkey Collage


My Spanish Tapas is always a hit! Usually, I’ll have a variety of Spanish cheeses, Marcona almonds with my “special” seasonings and my own recipe of marinated olives. My grilled bread always seems to be a crowd pleaser as well as the Croquetas filled with warm and gooey Manchego cheese and Serrano ham with Smoked Paprika aioli. CroquetasPicMonkey Collage   TapasMorePicMonkey Collage Smokey bacon wrapped around chorizo-filled dates baked with a Smokey Romesco sauce and tomatoes until it’s bubbly, is another one of my popular tapas recipes. And what about those Seared Lamb Chops with Curry Aioli? My absolute favorite dish! WinepairingPicMonkey Collage

My friends, David and Sarah know how to throw a party for Labor Day weekend! Paella is an instant party for a gathering of friends. While I made the paella, we all enjoyed the Sangria.




This vibrant and intensely flavored paella was the hit of the party! The shrimp were succulent and the chicken and sausage were the perfect additions to this amazing dish! And, everyone enjoyed every bite of the crispy, caramelized crust of rice called the socarrat.



Two sold-out Paella classes were the hit of the USN evening events! I was able to cook this one on the large indoor range for 25 hungry guest!


My paella will travel to you, too!

Save room for a bite (or two) of homemade Chocolate Treś Leches Cake! This creation is one of my favorite desserts ever, especially after a big plate of Paella!



08 2014