If you like vegan paella then you need to try this mushroom fideuà. Short angel-hair-like noodles replace the rice in this recipe to make a sort of Spanish noodle paella. Typically made with seafood, my vegetarian fideuà uses a variety of mushrooms for a totally plant-based version of this traditional Spanish dish.
We recently took advantage of a long weekend to visit the tiny village of Cadaqués, located on the Costa Brava about two and a half hours from Barcelona. It’s a charming whitewashed town of winding cobbled streets famous for being the home of Salvador Dali.
While once a quiet fishing village, Cadaqués is now dependent on tourism. Even in early April, and despite a chilly wind, the streets were teeming with tourists and the restaurants were packed.
This is the perfect location to sit on a terrace and enjoy some delicious Mediterranean cuisine with the lovely backdrop of a sparkling turquoise sea.
Fideuà is a Mediterranean dish from Valencia. It’s sort of similar to paella, but uses short, thin noodles instead of rice. It’s usually cooked in a paella pan and can be made with a variety of ingredients, but the most typical is shellfish.
The noodles can come in a variety of thicknesses, from macaroni-sized to angel hair. If you don’t have fideuà noddles, then you can use dried angel hair pasta broken into 2 cm pieces. The noodles are first toasted and then simmered in fish or shrimp stock before being finished in the oven to crispen the top layer.
The bottom layer of noodles often burns and sticks to the pan, and this is crispy layer has a special name: socarrat. For many Spanish people the socarrat is considered to be the best part of the dish, so don’t despair if you find it at the bottom of your pan!
Fideuà is a dish in regular rotation at our house. My husband had always been the fideuà master until I decided to develop a vegetarian version.
At first he didn’t have much faith in my ability to create a flavourful broth without using shellfish, but I was able to prove him wrong. Mushroom powder and soy sauce add an element of umami which cranked up the flavour of the vegetable broth and made all the difference.
You can buy mushroom powder in specialty shops, or you can take some dried mushrooms and whizz them in a food processor until they are ground to a fine powder. The finished dish is served with alioli, a garlic mayonnaise. I like to serve my mushroom fideuà following another traditional Spanish dish: white garlic soup.
Serves 2 - 3
Short angel-hair-like noodles replace the rice in this recipe to make a sort of Spanish noodle paella. Typically made with seafood, my vegetarian fideuà uses a variety of mushrooms for a totally plant-based version of this traditional Spanish dish.
5 minPrep Time
55 minCook Time
1 hrTotal Time
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tomatoes, diced
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 1/2 teaspoons mushroom powder (see above, and it's optional)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 225 grams (8 oz) fideuà or angel hair noodles
- 250 grams (9 oz) mixed mushrooms (I used an Asian mix of shiitake, shimeji, and oyster)
- Heat oil in a 30 cm (12-inch) wide paella or oven-safe frying pan over medium-low heat. Sauté the onions until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and bay leaf and continue to sauté for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are broken down and thick, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a medium-sized pot, combine the vegetable stock, white wine, mushroom powder and soy sauce. Place over low heat and allow to warm gently.
- Add the mushrooms to the tomatoes and sauté the mushrooms until they have reduced in size and the liquid they released has evaporated. Preheat the oven to 180° Celsius (350° Fahrenheit).
- Add the noodles to the pan and toast lightly until they begin to brown slightly, about 3-4 minutes. Add enough of the warm vegetable stock mixture to just cover the noodles, you may have some stock left over. Leave the noodles on a very low simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed and the noodles are almost tender or al dente, do not stir it while it cooks. If you feel the dish is becoming too dry before the noodles are tender, add any remaining stock. You still want to have a little liquid left in the pan before placing it in the oven, as it will continue to cook there.
- Place the entire pan in the oven and allow to bake until the top layer of noodles is crispy and any remaining liquid is absorbed, about 10-15 minutes. Watch it closely so that it doesn’t burn. The final dish should be crispy on top and creamy in the middle. The bottom layer should be slightly burnt and stick to the pan. Serve with alioli