I grew up near Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts—and still return there every summer. So, as you can imagine, I grew up enjoying lots of fresh-caught, local fish and seafood. Especially during the summertime and early fall.
Today, I still try to eat seafood several times a week, as it’s an excellent source of beneficial proteins, fats, and especially the all-important omega-3 fatty acids.
In fact, as you may recall, a recent study found that men and women with the highest omega-3 levels had a 33 percent lower risk of dying from any cause over a seven-year period compared to those with the lowest levels.
Summertime is the perfect time to enjoy lots of fresh seafood
At the risk of sounding like “Bubba” from the 1994 movie Forrest Gump, you can prepare seafood and fish lots of different ways, including:
- Battered and fried
- Grilled (on a skewer, in a basket, or thrown on the half shell)
- Layered (like a traditional clambake or seafood boil)
You can also throw lots of different flavors together into one pot to make paella.
In fact, here’s a traditional Spanish version of paella—courtesy of Cooking Light and myrecipes.com—that I thought you might enjoy preparing for your next summer gathering. (That is, if gatherings are finally allowed in your state, in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic!)…
Traditional Spanish Paella
- 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon saffron threads
- 3 (16-ounce) cans organic chicken broth
- 8 jumbo shrimp (about 1/2 pound), peeled and deveined
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 skinned, boned chicken thighs, cut in half
- 2 links Spanish chorizo sausage (about 6 1/2 ounces)
- 1 (4-ounce) slice prosciutto or ham, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 cups finely chopped onion
- 1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
- 1 cup diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 3 cups uncooked Arborio rice or other short-grain rice
- 1 cup frozen green peas
- 8 mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- Prepare the herb blend and set aside.
- Combine the water, saffron, and broth in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer, but don’t boil. Set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, and sauté for 2 minutes on each side. Remove from skillet. Add the sausage and prosciutto, and sauté for 2 minutes. Remove from skillet. Add shrimp and sauté 2 minutes. Remove from skillet.
- Reduce heat to medium-low. Add onion and bell pepper to the skillet and sauté for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomatoes, paprika, and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes. Add rice and continue to cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Stir in the herb blend, broth mixture, chicken, sausage mixture, and peas. Bring to a low boil and cook 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the mussels to the skillet, nestling them into the rice mixture. Cook 5 minutes or until the shells open; discard any unopened shells.
- Return the shrimp to the skilled and cook 5 minutes or until shrimp are done.
- Add lemon juice to the paella.
- Remove the skillet from heat, cover with a towel, and let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Supplementation is still a MUST for most people
Just remember, unless you eat fatty fish or seafood at every meal—every day—you probably don’t get enough omega-3s to achieve optimal health and longevity. That’s why I always suggest most people also take a high-quality fish oil supplement daily. And getting the right dose is vital.
To learn about the exact right dose of fish oil that makes the most sense for you, and to get tips on how to find a high-quality supplement, check out the June 2018 issue of my Insiders’ Cures newsletter (“Why I’m upping my recommendations for this ‘controversial’ supplement”). I’ll also tell you more about Portuguese variations on Spanish paella in my September 2020 issue. Don’t have a newsletter subscription? No worries—all it takes is one click!
“Traditional Spanish Paella,” My Recipes, 5/2000. (myrecipes.com/recipe/traditional-spanish-paella-0)
“Erythrocyte long-chain omega-3 fatty acid levels are inversely associated with mortality and with incident cardiovascular disease: The Framingham Heart Study,” Journal of Clinical Lipidology, 2/24/2018. (lipidjournal.com)