This is a Barajas classic. This is comfort food for my family. I guess you could say its the Mexican version of alphabet soup. Its a simple dish, all it is is egg noodles, or "fideo" stewed in a tomato broth. Its one of those dishes where you only have to do a little prep, and then sit back and let the flavors meld together. So, there's really no way to mess up, because if you just put the right flavors in, they will just become highlighted as they simmer. This will always be one of my favorite comfort foods not only because its so easy to make, but because the smell of the tomato broth is the ultimate heart-warming aroma to me. It reminds me of the times I would visit my Abuela in Mexico, and she would always have a soup on the back burner, always mini star pasta in a tomato broth like this Fideo, while she prepared the beans and quesadillas. It doesn't get more homey than that. Gracias Abuelita.
Another thanks to my dad for teaching me this dish years ago and always telling me that's its really good when he eats it, even though I know I can't beat Abuela's mastery. Even though I have made this dish numerous times, because it's tasty and economical, I do not have the exact measurements. I am always changing the serving sizes so the numbers always change. I will do my best to make it an almost-exact science for you to follow here. But, no worries, trust your Mexican instinct on this one.
Ingredients (for about 10-15 servings) :
- 1 bag (12 oz) Fine Egg Noodles
- 1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- About 5 medium tomatoes
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2-3 chicken bouillon or cubes*
- About 2 cups water*
*You can replace the water and chicken cubes for just 2 cups chicken broth. This is preferred for more flavor, if you have the option.*
1. Obtain a large frying pan. Put vegetable oil in the pan, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan, about 1-2 tablespoons. Turn the heat on. When the oil is hot, add the bag of egg noodles.
2. Let the noodles heat for a few seconds and then continuously turn the noodles with two forks, in a fluffing or tossing motion. Do this making sure to coat all the noodles in oil. Be careful not to break the noodles, or knock them out of the pan. Keep tossing the noodles for about 10 minutes, or until all the noodles are brown. Lower the heat, better earlier than later, before the noodles get too dark.
3. When the noodles are all brown, move the pan off the hot burner, to stop the noodles from browning. Meanwhile, prepare your tomato broth. Obtain a blender nearby to put the ingredients in. Chop the tomatoes and onions into large chunks, the blender can do the rest. Peel the garlic and toss it in. Add 1 cup of water into the blender and blend until all chunks have vanished and broth is smooth throughout.
4. Put the pan back on the hot burner, turn on, then add the tomato broth from the blender. Then, fill the blender with another cup of water and pour it into the pan as well. The noodles should all be covered by the water. If not, add more water so that all the noodles are submerged. Turn up the heat, wait for the liquid to boil, then add the chicken bouillon. Lower the heat to a simmer, stir noodles, then cover the pan with a lid. Let the noodles simmer until all the liquid has evaporated, and the noodles have expanded in size, about 45 minutes. Stir at least twice throughout, and keep checking on it, to make sure it doesn't boil over and make a mess. After its done, let it sit for a little bit to cool, and then grub.
Its definitely still going to be hot, and in this way it makes a great winter dish, but the fresh tomatoes make it a perfect summer dish so you pick. Muy rico y sabroso!