In this traditional Catalan dish, short dry noodles called fideos are first browned in oil and then simmered with just a bit of stock and fresh seafood. The unconventional topping here: parsley and crunchy almonds.
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1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped Marcona almonds
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 dried chiles de árbol, stemmed and crumbled
7 ounces fideos or angel hair pasta, broken into 1-inch lengths (2 cups)
1 small tomato, diced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
Pinch of saffron threads
1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
One 8-ounce bottle clam juice
1 pound mussels, scrubbed and debearded
1/2 pound cleaned calamari, bodies sliced 1/4 inch thick
How to Make It
In a small bowl, combine the parsley and almonds.
In a large enameled cast-iron casserole or paella pan, heat the oil. Add the shallot, garlic, chiles and fideos, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the fideos are lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato, tomato paste and saffron and cook, stirring, until the tomato paste is lightly caramelized, about 3 minutes. Stir in the stock and clam juice and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderate heat until the fideos are al dente, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the mussels and calamari, cover and cook over low heat until the mussels open, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Top with the parsley and almonds and serve.
Dry sparkling wines have a bright tartness that goes well with shellfish.
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