Jul 20, 2007

Sopa seca de fideos

I really don't like cooking for just myself, but sometimes it's inevitable.
When that happens I have a few old recipes I fall back on.
I've gotten it down to an art, how to dirty as few utensils as possible.
One of the easiest dishes to make is something I learned about...sheesh, maybe 25 years ago?... from a cookbook picked up in San Antonio with my mother. This was in the midst of my Mexican period.

Anyway, I went to Big Lots the other day and found just the right brand of Mexican noodles (fideos). It's basically just spaghetti that's really short. Most of the time I simply use ordinary spaghetti and break it myself. I often take short cuts with the recipe, but tonight I took my time. It's cheap, easy and good, pretty ideal for any recipe.

Here's my recipe (not from the book, which has been long lost):
One pound of fine spaghetti, broken up into one inch pieces.
1 can of chicken broth
1 can of Rotel (the tomatoes with chiles already in it)
a tablespoon of oil or so.
An onion, sliced or cubed.
a pinch of ground cumin
a dash of ground corriander
Cheddar cheese, (or Monterey Jack or Queso Chihuahua if you like)

In a large pan with a cover, heat the oil. Put in the broken spaghetti and fry them until they are opaque. Don't let them burn, but it's good when at least few get browned. Add the onions and stir. When the noodles are opaque, put in the Rotel and let it absorb a bit. Stir it well. Add as much of the chicken broth as you need (usually the whole can). Add the cumin (not too much) and the corriander (I like more corriander) and cover the pot. Turn the heat down to medium and let cook until the noodles are al dente. Be sure not to overcook the noodles. Taste periodically to see that they are still firm. When done, sprinkle with the cheese and eat.

If you want, you can vary the recipe any kind of way. I've made it with no fat (using a nonstick pan and a tiny bit of Pam) and even put a bit of chicken in it once or twice. It's very much homecooking, but that's the kind I like the best.

No comments: