You are paella.
Paella makes no sense. Nobody even agrees what goes inside. The range is overwhelming, wasteful?
Snails, Sausage, Rice, Green Beans, Rabbit, Chicken, “sometimes duck,” Clams, Mussels, Lobster, Rosemary Branches, Artichoke Hearts?, Onions, Shrimp, Paprika, Olive Oil, Chorizo, Bamba?, Calasparra? Special Names for Special Rice. Saffron, the single costliest spice on earth.
Livestock, seafood, things from the air, things from the earth, things from the water.
Who thought this up? The sequence, the container, the heat, the quantity of food, when do the mussels open? Why would you put a lobster in a group setting? Each of these creatures and substances, hundreds of lifetimes in aggregate, with all their little worlds to make them just so, only once, never to be repeated, a hundred miracles, millennia of evolution, fate, chance, destiny all chucked recklessly, fearlessly? into one hyper specific pan.
What is the special ingredient? Who knows. It’s everything all together, all at once. It’s all special. It’s all amazing. It’s all overwhelming. Possibly stupid. You have to try.