Shetland paella puts a Scottish spin on this seafood favourite. "This was the last dish I cooked on the trip and it really summed up the amazing produce they have in this part of the world, featuring both local fish and shellfish," says chef James Martin, recalling the adventures he had making his Islands To Highlands series.

"I want to thank all the fishermen that brave the seas around these parts to deliver our catch - particularly Rob, who managed to get all this produce for me. I hope he enjoyed the dish, as I gave him not just the meal, but also the pan, the table... in fact everything on the last day of filming on location!"

Shetland's paella from James Martin's Islands To Highlands


(Serves 8)

50ml olive oil

6 boneless chicken thighs

2 onions, sliced

3 garlic cloves, crushed

Small bunch of oregano, thyme and marjoram, chopped

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

150g paella rice

5 vine tomatoes, quartered

4tsp smoked paprika

1 monkfish tail, cut into 2cm pieces

16 whole shell-on prawns

8 scallops

300g mussels, cleaned and debearded (see tip below)

Small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, very finely chopped


1. Light your BBQ. When the coals are silvery in colour, it's ready to cook on.

2. Place a 30-cm paella pan directly onto the BBQ or over a medium heat. Pour in half of the oil and fry the chicken thighs until golden all over. Add the onions, garlic and herbs, season well, then scatter the rice over the top. Stir once to combine, add the tomatoes, pour over 500ml cold water, then sprinkle over the paprika. Gently stir everything together and simmer for 20 minutes. Season again, then add all the fish. Drizzle the remaining oil over the top, cover with foil and cook for a further 10 minutes.

3. Remove the foil, discard any mussels that have not opened and sprinkle over the parsley just before serving.

Martin's tip: Fresh mussels need to be alive before you cook them. To prepare them, pull off the stringy beards, knock off any barnacles and give the shells a scrub in fresh water to clean. Throw away ones with broken shells or any that don't close tightly when you tap them.

James Martin's Islands To Highlands by James Martin, photography by Peter Cassidy, is published by Quadrille, priced £25. Available now.