My daughter has been into thin spaghetti recently, eating them with everything but tomato sauce. She has eaten them seasoned with just butter, salt and parsley and then with mesquite chicken patties, then she eyed the morcon and its rich sauce and started eating them with the spaghetti. Since then she has paired the pasta with honey ham, hotdogs, chili, chicken inasal (grilled), and corned beef hash. When she is in the mood for something, that's all she eats until she gets sick of it. One time she had PBJ sandwich for lunch everyday for almost 2 weeks! Weird. So I decided to give in and made the Spanish seafood fideuá using angel hair pasta. I was going to make paella but changed my mind because I also want to try this paella-like dish anyway.
½ pound Manila clams
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
5 cups water
1 pound mussels, scrubbed and debearded
½ pound medium shrimps, peeled and halved lenghtwise, shells reserved
½ pound monkfish with bones, cut into chunks, reserve the bones
pinch of saffron threads
½ cup olive oil
½ lb angel hair pasta, broken into 2-inch lengths
1 clove garlic, minced
1 each small green and red peppers, seeded and cut into narrow strips
½ poundb small squid, cleaned and sliced into rings
1 lemon cut into 4 wedges
- Scrub the clams under cold water. In a large bowl, combine the clams, coarse salt and water to cover and let stand for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours for them to release any sand trapped in their shells
- .In a stockpot. bring the 5 cups of water to a boil, add the mussels, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon remove the mussels, set aside to cool. Add the shrimp shells and monkfish bones to the stockpot and simmer for 15 minutes. When the mussels are cool enough, remove the meats and discard the shells and any that failed to open. Set the meats aside.
- When the broth is ready, strain through a fine mesh placed over a bowl. Measure 3 - 4 cups, add the saffron and 1 ½ teaspoons salt, set aside.
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- In a 15 inch pan or paella pan, heat the olive oil, add the pasta, stirring often, for 3 minutes or until golden brown. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pasta and set aside. Remove all but 2 tablespoons oil. Add the garlic and peppers in the pan and stir fry until tender. Add the shrimps, fish and squid, saute for 3 minutes. Add the 3 cups reserved broth and bring to the boil. Distribute the fried pasta evenly in the pan. Drain the clams and place the clams and shelled mussels on top of the pasta. Cook on high heat for 3 minutes. Add more broth if too dry. Transfer the pan to the oven and cook for 10 minutes. The liquid will be absorbed, the pasta will be tender and the clams will have opened. Remove from oven, discard unopened clams and serve with lemon wedges on the side.
This recipe is adapted from The Cuisines of Spain by Teresa Barrenechea. The dish is very very good and will appeal to seafood lovers. The amount of broth that she suggests (4 cups) is too much for the ½ pound of pasta. Add 3 cups first, then add more if the dish appears dry, before transferring to the oven.