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Recipe: Make the Spanish dish fideos once and it will be part of your weekly repertoire

For 4 people

One of the great dishes of Spanish and Mexican cuisine begins by browning thin wheat noodles until golden and toasted before cooking them in broth. The Mexican version, the sopa de fideo, becomes a soup seasoned with tomatoes. Fideos (fee-DAY-os) from Spain is something like paella, in which there is no more liquid in the pan of cooked noodles. In Catalonia, where it is popular and called fideua, the dish consists of shrimp, mussels and other seafood. Spanish markets sell fine pasta especially for fideos. Here, packages marked “thin spaghetti” (spaghettini) or vermicelli are ideal. Angel hair is too thin and can get mushy; regular spaghetti is too thick. But if you can’t find either, go ahead and use regular spaghetti, but you might need a longer cooking time and more liquid towards the end for it to become tender. Break the strands into 2 inch pieces so that they are manageable. Not all traditional methods brown the noodles, but it does give the dish an unusual toasted wheat flavor. This riff on the Catalan recipe begins with cooking the pasta in olive oil. As it browns in the hot oil and you flip it with tongs, sprigs manage to come out of the pan, so use a deep Dutch oven or stock pot. Then, in a large skillet, sauté a mixture of mushrooms with the onion, garlic, anchovies and tomato paste until the mushrooms release their moisture and everything evaporates. Pour the mushrooms into the grilled noodles with chicken or vegetable broth and let the mixture boil steadily until all the liquid in the pot is absorbed by the pasta and the strands are tender. You need to stir it often and keep a close eye on the pan towards the end of cooking. Finally, add baby spinach, which at first seems to be too big for the pot, but toss them in half at a time and the bulky greens will crumble. The deeply flavored noodles with meaty mushrooms and shiny spinach will delight you. Make fideos once and you’ll like it enough to put it in your weekly repertoire.

4 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces (3/4 pound) thin spaghetti (spaghettini) or vermicelli, cut into 2 inch lengths
1 pound cake, shiitake, cremini or baby bella mushrooms (or a combination), thinly sliced
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
Salt and pepper to taste
4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth, or more if needed
5 ounces of baby spinach

1. In an explosion-proof casserole dish or pot over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the spaghettini or vermicelli and cook, stirring constantly with tongs, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the pasta begins to brown. Remove from heat and reserve.

2. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. When it is hot, add the mushrooms, onion, garlic, anchovies, tomato paste, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes, or until the onions are translucent and the liquid in the pot has evaporated.

3. Pour the mushrooms into the pot of pasta. Add the broth and lower the heat to high. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat so the liquid is bubbling evenly and cook, uncovered, stirring often, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until all the liquid in the pot is absorbed and the pasta is tender but has been tenderized. still bite when you taste a few wicks. Stir constantly towards the end of cooking. If the pasta is not tender, add more additional broth, 1/2 cup at a time, and allow the pasta to absorb it before adding more, until the strands are tender.

4. Stir in half the spinach and cook, stirring constantly, or for 1 minute. Stir in remaining spinach and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 more minute, or until all the spinach leaves have collapsed. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if desired.

Sheryl julien

For 4 people

One of the great dishes of Spanish and Mexican cuisine begins by browning thin wheat noodles until golden and toasted before cooking them in broth. The Mexican version, the sopa de fideo, becomes a soup seasoned with tomatoes. Fideos (fee-DAY-os) from Spain is something like paella, in which there is no more liquid in the pan of cooked noodles. In Catalonia, where it is popular and called fideua, the dish consists of shrimp, mussels and other seafood. Spanish markets sell fine pasta especially for fideos. Here, packages marked “thin spaghetti” (spaghettini) or vermicelli are ideal. Angel hair is too thin and can get mushy; regular spaghetti is too thick. But if you can’t find either, go ahead and use regular spaghetti, but you might need a longer cooking time and more liquid towards the end for it to become tender. Break the strands into 2 inch pieces so that they are manageable. Not all traditional methods brown the noodles, but it does give the dish an unusual toasted wheat flavor. This riff on the Catalan recipe begins with cooking the pasta in olive oil. As it browns in the hot oil and you flip it with tongs, sprigs manage to come out of the pan, so use a deep Dutch oven or stock pot. Then, in a large skillet, sauté a mixture of mushrooms with the onion, garlic, anchovies and tomato paste until the mushrooms release their moisture and everything evaporates. Pour the mushrooms into the grilled noodles with chicken or vegetable broth and let the mixture boil steadily until all the liquid in the pot is absorbed by the pasta and the strands are tender. You need to stir it often and keep a close eye on the pan towards the end of cooking. Finally, add baby spinach, which at first seems to be too big for the pot, but toss them in half at a time and the bulky greens will crumble. The deeply flavored noodles with meaty mushrooms and shiny spinach will delight you. Make fideos once and you’ll like it enough to put it in your weekly repertoire.

4 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces (3/4 pound) thin spaghetti (spaghettini) or vermicelli, cut into 2 inch lengths
1 pound cake, shiitake, cremini or baby bella mushrooms (or a combination), thinly sliced
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
Salt and pepper to taste
4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth, or more if needed
5 ounces of baby spinach

1. In an explosion-proof casserole dish or pot over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the spaghettini or vermicelli and cook, stirring constantly with tongs, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the pasta begins to brown. Remove from heat and reserve.

2. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. When it is hot, add the mushrooms, onion, garlic, anchovies, tomato paste, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes, or until the onions are translucent and the liquid in the pot has evaporated.

3. Pour the mushrooms into the pot of pasta. Add the broth and lower the heat to high. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat so the liquid is bubbling evenly and cook, uncovered, stirring often, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until all the liquid in the pot is absorbed and the pasta is tender but has been tenderized. still bite when you taste a few wicks. Stir constantly towards the end of cooking. If the pasta is not tender, add more additional broth, 1/2 cup at a time, and allow the pasta to absorb it before adding more, until the strands are tender.

4. Stir in half the spinach and cook, stirring constantly, or for 1 minute. Stir in remaining spinach and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 more minute, or until all the spinach leaves have collapsed. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if desired.Sheryl julien


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