Fideos are wafer-skinny string noodles that, together with capers, were introduced more than to Mexico by the Spanish from Sicily, an island they also occupied for a handful of hundred several years. The consequence was sopa seca (literally indicating dry soup), a fantastically flavoured pasta dish from Veracruz, in which the noodles are sauteed until brown, then simmered in a wealthy tomato sauce spiked with smoky chipotle relish, moreover fresh crab meat, a scattering of capers and contemporary lime.
Crab fideos with smoked chilli relish
I like to serve this as a starter, as it is accomplished in Mexico (as a soup program), but it also tends to make a fantastic weeknight evening meal.
Prep 10 min
Prepare dinner 40 min
400g vermicelli or angel-hair pasta
100ml olive, vegetable or rapeseed oil
4 infant shallots, peeled and finely chopped
1-2 green chillies, finely chopped
7-8 ripe plum tomatoes, halved
A few pinches of allspice
2 bay leaves
3-4 tbsp child capers
Salt and pepper
1 pinch sugar
500ml fish or vegetable inventory
225g dressed crab (I like Devon or Dorset crab)
Soured product, to provide
1 handful chopped coriander, to provide
For the salsa
2 garlic cloves
2-3 tsp demerara sugar, to flavor
2-3 heaped tbsp chipotles en adobo
2 tsp fish sauce
In a heavy–based frying pan or paella dish, fry the pasta in the oil for a number of minutes, stirring from time to time, right until it turns a prosperous golden color. Remove with a slotted spoon, and drain on a plate lined with kitchen towel.
Change down the warmth to medium and sweat the shallots and chillies right up until they are translucent. Although they are cooking, coarsely grate the tomatoes, discarding the skin (or blitz them in a food items processor). Add the tomatoes, allspice, bay and half the capers, then year with salt, pepper and a good pinch of sugar. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, to focus the flavours into a charming wealthy sauce.
To make the salsa, bash the garlic with the sugar and a pinch of salt until eventually you have a paste. Perform in the chipotles, adopted by the zest and juice of one lime. Incorporate the fish sauce a teaspoon at a time, then look at the seasoning – the salsa should really be spicy, savoury, a little bit sweet and sour, so incorporate much more sugar, lime or salt to stability the flavours.
Fifteen minutes right before you want to consume, pour the inventory into the tomato sauce and deliver to simmering position. Stir in the noodles and all but a sprinkle of the remaining capers, then simmer gently until finally the liquid is absorbed and the noodles are tender.
Serve the pasta in deep bowls topped with the crab, a generous spoonful of soured cream and a dollop of the salsa. Scatter with coriander and the remaining capers, and present a saucer of lime wedges at the desk.
And for a straightforward flex …
Convert this into a veggie dish by omitting the crab and fish sauce – it appears to be like incredible served with a ricotta-stuffed courgette flower on major.