4 16 – 20 count shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 oz. spicy sausage
8 littleneck clams
¼ C green peas, frozen
½ red bell pepper, diced
1 T olive oil
¼ # vermicelli pasta
½ onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ C scallion, minced
1 tomato, diced
2T tomato paste
4 oz. Bottled clam juice
1 ½ C chicken or vegetable stock
¼ C white wine (optional) or equivalent amount of water
1 t saffron threads, crushed
¼ C parsley, chopped
Lemon wedges and minced parsley for serving
Break pasta into 2” lengths by wrapping in plastic film and breaking against the edge of a counter.
Heat 1T of olive oil in pan over medium high heat. Add sausage and cook until lightly browned and cooked through. Transfer sausage to a paper towel lined plate and set aside. Reduce heat to medium.
In the same skillet, toast broken vermicelli, stirring frequently, until lightly browned and toasted. Watch carefully as the vermicelli can burn quickly. Transfer vermicelli to a plate and set aside.
Using the same skillet, add the onion and cook until the onion has softened slightly. Add garlic, tomato paste and scallions, and cook until fragrant. Stir in diced tomatoes, clam juice, stock, wine and crushed saffron. Bring to a low boil.
Return the toasted vermicelli and the sausage to the skillet. Cook for 6-8 minutes. Arrange clams, hinged side down, into the vermicelli. Cover and simmer for 6 minutes. Add shrimp to pan, cover again and cook until clams have opened and shrimp is cooked through. Depending on how much liquid the clams release you may need to add a little more water to prevent sticking.
When most of the liquid had been absorbed, sprinkle the peas and diced red pepper over the top of the fideos.
Sprinkle with minced parsley. Serve with lemon wedges
*Chef notes – If you are using bivalves like mussels or clams be sure to clean them with a stiff brush under running water before adding them to the dish. Any that are not closed – or don’t close when tapped – need to be discarded. When adding them to the pan, nestle them in the simmering noodles hinged side down. Once added, cover the pan with a tight fitting lid. Bivalves cook when the hot steam produced from the simmering liquid is trapped in the pan, so do your best not to remove the lid too frequently. I usually check progress once after about 7-8 minutes. When cooked, they should be open – unopened ones should be discarded – they are duds. (I know this is the exact opposite of what you did before you cooked them.) Finally, I add clam juice in the recipe to enhance the briny flavor of the seafood. You don’t have to use it, but if you’d like to, it can be found in most grocery stores near the canned tuna fish. Costco carries a reasonably priced saffron or reasonable quality in their baking/spice section.