Fideo

If you’ve still got leftover beans, I have an excellent way to reuse them without the added calories from refrying them. Fideo’s a quick way to reuse leftovers when paydays a little further than you thought. You can “green it up” with a lot of fresh veggies or you can use whatever canned stuffs you’ve got in the cupboard. Sometimes I’ll add corn or cut green beans, and I think I’ve added some potato chunks at one point. In it’s purest form you would only use the “Mexican trifecta,” which has been defined by my husband as onions, tomatoes and cilantro. If you look at most Mexican recipes, they will use the trifecta or a slight variation of it for almost any recipe. For example, remove the beans and replace vermicelli with rice and you’ve basically got the recipe for Spanish Rice with some adjustments of course. If you look at the recipes online for Fideo, a lot of them are not what I’ve been making. I’m now confidently assuming that every family will make it with their own recipe and preferences.

Vermicelli is a strange pasta to me, but it’s also crazy cheap. I found a package of it for 33 cents at the grocery store and decided that this would a meal that can save me ample money during my biweekly meal planning. Let’s go ahead and jump right in with the recipe I most commonly use.

    • 1lb Ground Beef
    • 1c of cooked beans or 1 can of Ranchero Beans
    • 7-8oz vermicelli/fideo (1 package)
    • 1 small onion
    • 1 large tomato or 1 can of diced tomatoes
    • ~2Tbsp of chopped cilantro
    • 1 can tomato sauce
    • water to cover
    • 1-2tsp of vegetable oil
    • 1tsp cumin, 1Tbsp black pepper, 1/2tsp garlic powder

In a separate pan, brown ground beef until cooked fully and drain off excess fat. Pour your vermicelli and oil into a larger soup-sized pot and brown the noodles, adding in the onion once they look “done.” Add in the rest of your ingredients after the onions are “medium done,” bring the mixture to a boil. Set the heat to low, cover and simmer for the amount of time prescribed by your vermicelli package, typically 8-10 minutes. You may need to give it a couple stirs during the simmering period to prevent your noodles from burning to the bottom. One of the great things about this recipe is the amount of time it takes, maybe 30-40minutes from pulling out ingredients to plating the dish.

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