wikipedia has this to say about paella:

Paella is usually garnished with vegetables and meat or seafood. The three main ingredients are rice, saffron, and olive oil.

and also this:

Paella is generally cooked in a paella pot, which is a large, shallow, flat pan. First the meat, and then the vegetables are stir fried in olive oil and the rice is added so as to be suffused in the oil. Boiling stock is then added to the paella pan, and reduced by boiling. Once the rice is nearly done, the paella is removed from the heat and left to absorb the remaining water. The paella is ready to be served after having cooled for several minutes.

all of which lead me to believe that betty crocker knows nothing about paella, since artichoke and kidney bean paella has pretty much nothing to do with anything mentioned above.

maybe someone wanted to write a recipe involving artichokes, kidney beans, and rice, and they got a little creative with the name. maybe it originally started out as a paella recipe, and through successive editing got turned into a “rice with stuff” recipe. but as far as i can tell, it fails entirely to have anything to do with paella.

it’s not that the recipe is hard. in fact, it’s pretty easy. the only adventure i had was that i don’t have any turmeric, and didn’t feel like buying any, so i ended up using celery salt to give it some kick (also, they tell you to use two drops of hot sauce. i used two tablespoons, and it’s still not that hot, so i don’t know what kind of hot sauce betty crocker uses but i sure ain’t buying it).

but when all is said and done, and it gets transferred from the pan to the tupperware, it’s just rice with stuff. rice with tasty stuff, but still.

i guess it just goes to show that betty crocker is good for the basics, but she don’t know paella from a panful of rice.