Paella (Valenciana pronunciation: [paˈeʎa] or [pəˈeʎə], Spanish: [paˈeʎa]; English approximation: /pɑːˈeɪlə, -ˈeɪljə, -ˈeɪjə, -ˈɛlə, -ˈjɛlə/ or /paɪˈɛlə/) is a Valencian rice dish with ancient roots that originated in its modern form in the mid-19th century near Albufera lagoon on the east coast of Spain adjacent to the city of Valencia. Many non-Spaniards view paella as Spain’s national dish, but most Spaniards consider it to be a regional Valencian dish. Valencians, in turn, regard paella as one of their identifying symbols.
Types of paella include Valencian paella (Spanish: paella valenciana), vegetarian/vegan paella (Spanish: paella de verduras), seafood paella (Spanish: paella de marisco), and mixed paella (Spanish: paella mixta), but many other types are known, as well. Valencian paella is believed to be the original recipe and consists of white rice, green beans (bajoqueta and tavella), meat (chicken and rabbit), white beans (garrofón), snails, and seasoning such as saffron and rosemary. Another very common but seasonal ingredient is artichokes. Seafood paella replaces meat with seafood and omits beans and green vegetables. Mixed paella is a free-style combination of meat from land animals, seafood, vegetables, and sometimes beans. Most paella chefs use bomba rice due to it being harder to overcook, but Valencians tend to use a slightly stickier (and thus more susceptible to overcooking) variety known as Senia. All types of paellas use olive oil.