April 29, 2010
By Kim Dannies
Rossejat de fideos, a traditional dish of Spain’s Catalonia region, resembles paella; but instead of rice, it calls for fideos (fih-DAY-ohs), fine vermicelli-like pasta that is toasted and crispy. I took the fideo concept one step further and whipped up fried shrimp and chicken fideo pancakes topped with a spicy-sweet yogurt sauce. The result is a very satisfying and fun treat — fragrant, crunchy, feisty cakes that are the perfect tapas food.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In small batches, snap 8 ounces of angel hair pasta into 2-inch pieces on to a large cookie sheet. Toast the pasta until fragrant, 8 minutes.
In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high and sauté 4 ounces of crumbled chorizo sausage and 2 tablespoons of sliced garlic until the garlic is just golden, about 5 minutes. Add a large pinch of crushed red pepper.
Combine 2 cups chicken stock, 1 cup white wine, 6 chopped scallions and a large pinch of saffron; add to sauté pan. Bring mixture to a boil, then turn down heat to low. Stir in the pasta and cook 10 minutes, until the fideos are al dente and the sauce is creamy.
Stir in 6 ounces of (small dice) raw shrimp or chicken; season with kosher salt. Cool mixture. Whisk together 2 egg whites and 1 egg until frothy. Fold into fideo mixture along with 4 ounces of finely shredded Manchego or Parmesan cheese. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and form 12 plump fideo cakes. Rest cakes in fridge for 1 hour.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet on high and add 2 tablespoons of grape seed oil. Fry the cakes in batches until both sides are crispy and brown, about 5 minutes per side. Add small drizzles of oil, as needed, with each batch. Warm the fried fideo cakes on a paper towel-lined cookie sheet in a 250-degree oven.
Spicy-Sweet Yogurt Sauce
Drain 6 ounces of plain non-fat yogurt. Whisk together with 1 scant teaspoon of commercial Sriracha sauce, 1 tablespoon mayo and 2 teaspoons blue agave syrup (or honey). Drizzle over warm fideos. Devour immediately.
Kim Dannies is a graduate of La Varenne Cooking School in France. She lives in Williston with her husband, Jeff; they have three college-aged daughters who come and go. For archived Everyday Gourmet columns go to kimdannies.com.