We have always assumed that noodles were only exclusive to Italians and Asians. Spanish speaking countries too, have their own variety called Fideo noodles. Fideo incidentally is the Spanish word for noodle. They use this in many Spanish pasta-like dishes and in soups.
Fideo noodles are thin and round like those found in chicken noodle soup. The length and thickness of the noodle vary.
Some could be as thin as angel hair, others can be as thick as spaghetti noodles. You can use them in soups, in casseroles, and even in the most popular Spanish dish, paella.
Although made from durum wheat, Fideo noodles differ in their preparation. They are usually not boiled. Some dry Fideos are first toasted in olive oil.
You can use the best electric skillet you can find to do this. Others cook them right in the sauce itself, where the noodles could soak up the sauce's flavors.
A Short History
A short history will tell you a lot about Fideo noodles. Either the Greeks, the Arabs or the Persians may have invented them.
They then passed the legacy to Spain and Italy between the 18th and 19th centuries. Originally the Fideo noodles were just hand-rolled strings of dough. They then cooked these in liquid.
Italians became more innovative with their pasta in the ensuing centuries. They created noodles in varied shapes and purposes.
The Spanish, however, were more conservative with their Fideos by keeping its purity. The Fideo noodles would later find itself in some other culture's cuisines.
Sopa de Fideo Recipe
This is a very popular Spanish soup which is full of flavors, very inexpensive and so simple to make. If you have the best ninja blender, this will be even easier to make. The noodles used here are first toasted to add an extra layer of flavor.
This makes it more flavorful against the traditional noodle soup. This is a great soup for people who want to put layers of flavors in their soup.
You can add shredded or roasted chicken. You can top the soup serving with avocado slices, queso fresco or some tortilla chips. All these will surely add texture to the dish.
- A soup pot
- A blender or food processor
- 2 medium-sized onions
- 4 garlic cloves
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 16 oz fideo noodles (uncooked)
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 cans of whole tomatoes (peeled)
- 12 cups of chicken broth
- 2 medium-sized limes
- 2 medium-sized jalapeños (optional)
- 1/2 bunch of cilantro (optional)
Steps To Follow
1. Prepare the diced onions and the minced garlic.
2. In a soup pot, add some vegetable oil. Break the Fideo noodles into 1-2 inch sections then add them to the soup pot to toast.
3. Cook the noodles over medium heat while stirring constantly. This should take a few minutes. Cook the noodles until they have turned a golden brown color.
4. Add the cumin, diced onions, and minced garlic to the pot. Continue the cooking process until you've softened the onions.
5. Add some juice from the canned tomatoes to prevent the noodles from browning. Puree the tomatoes and its juices with a food processor or a blender. Add this to the soup pot together with the chicken broth.
6. Adding jalapeno peppers will give the soup some extra zing flavor but without much heat. Cover the pot, raise the heat to medium-high and let the soup boil. Reduce heat to simmer for another fifteen minutes or until the noodles have softened.
7. Add the lime juice then top with cilantro leaves to finish the soup just before you serve it. Plate some sliced limes for those who prefer some acidity in their soup.
This is almost similar to an Italian spaghetti pasta dish, but done is Spanish style. Again, Fideo is the noodle of choice here. It's prepared differently from its Italian counterpart.
- A large skillet
- Serving bowls
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 8 chicken breast halves (skinless and boneless)
- 24 oz fideo noodles
- 10 plum tomatoes (chopped)
- 2 large onions (chopped)
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 5 tsp chili powder
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 3 cups of water
- 2 cups of Cheddar cheese (shredded)
Steps To Follow
1. Over medium heat, put a tablespoon of the vegetable oil in the skillet. Brown the outside of the chicken breast in it. Remove the breast from skillet then set aside.
2. Add the rest of the oil to the skillet. Add the Fideo noodles. Cook, constantly stirring until the noodles have browned.
3. Drain the excess oil from skillet, then add the onion and tomatoes. Dice the chicken breast and put them back into the skillet.
4. Flavor the sauce with chili powder, cumin, pepper, and salt. Pour in the water and cover.
5. Simmer over medium heat until the pasta is soft and it has absorbed the water. This should take about 10-12 minutes. Add more water if needed.
6. Spoon the mixture into serving bowls. Top it off with shredded cheese.
Fideo With Chicken
Try this Spanish dish with Fideo noodles and some vegetables. This is simple, delightful. It is chicken noodle soup, Spanish style.
- A big skillet with a heavy bottom
- 3/4 cup of fideo noodles
- 1/2 tbsp canola oil
- 1/2 cup of cut green beans
- Half a zucchini squash (sliced)
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1/2 cup of Mexican‑style tomatoes (diced)
- 1/2 pound chicken breast (cooked then chopped)
- 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth
- A pinch of salt
- A pinch of pepper
Steps To Follow
1. Heat up a skillet with a heavy bottom over high.
2. Add the broken Fideo noodles and oil and saute until the noodles turn golden brown.
3. Add the vegetables together with the garlic and cumin. Saute for another two minutes.
4. Stir the tomatoes, the chicken, and the broth and bring this mixture to boil. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for another eight minutes.
5. Flavor with salt and pepper.