Monday, January 26, 2009


I love doing this blog because it motivates me to get the recipes floating around in my head down in black and white. Often times we have a great meal and when I go to recreate it it’s not so good. After a couple of failed attempts it becomes lost forever. This creation has been in the back of my head for a while and today I brought it to life.

We had a Café Rio buy one get one free card with unlimited usage for 2008, so we ate there A LOT. Our whole family could have a great meal for about 8 bucks. I did however, get “Café Rio Salad burn-out.” As I started trying different things I came across the Friday special, Fideo – a Mexican pasta. It was good for something different, but there was room for improvement. We haven’t been back since the card expired but this recipe has been brewing.

What’s for lunch? Jarom has Monday’s off which means instead of grazing on vegetables throughout the afternoon, I need to make something substantial. I had leftover carne asada in the fridge from Saturday night’s fajitas. This is another Costco secret. It is called Bill Bailey’s Carne Asada and comes with all the seasoning already on the meat. So you just slice it in strips and it cooks in 3 minutes. Jarom’s friend Jackson has been making this for get-togethers, we always go home talking about how we gorged ourselves on it. Jarom finally got the dish at the Christmas party, that’s one food men can talk and talk about – MEAT. While Jackson grilled his meat which is VERY manly, I prefer to slice it first so as not to burn my delicate hands on hot meat which means I pan fry. I’m also stocked up on vegetables, who can pass up the deals at Superstition Ranch market? 6 for $1 bell peppers! So my fideo recreation was a hit and I have it recorded so we can have it again in the future!

1 lb. brown rice thin spaghetti
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 bell pepper, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
14 oz can diced tomatoes
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped (reserve some for garnish if desired)
1/2 lb. carne asada
3 cups Colby jack cheese, shredded
1-2 avocados, diced as garnish
Sour cream as garnish

Boil pasta to al dente, be sure to salt the water (1 tablespoon is good). Drain and set aside. Heat a large fry pan to medium, sautee onions, peppers and carrots 5 minutes. Add salt, garlic, cumin and tomatoes. Transfer to pot with pasta, toss with cilantro and dump into baking dish (2 -9 inch pie dishes). Turn up heat to high and cook 3 minutes, turning the meat for even browning and separating the strips. Arrange meat on top of pasta and cover with cheese. Broil 5 minutes on medium until cheese is bubbly and beginning to brown. Top with garnishes and serve.


  1. Hey, where at Costco is the carne asada? Not the frozen section, right? I'm not sure my Costco has the meat...but this looks good.

  2. At my Costco it is in the refrigerated cases opposite the lunch meats. This could easily be vegetarian, but the meat is super good and definitely adds loads of flavor even in small amounts. I use 1/6 of the package and freeze the rest in small amounts.

  3. We did this vegetarian after all, and it was great. Easy too! Thanks.

  4. I LOVE Fideo at Cafe Rio! I try to remember and go there on Friday nights just so I can eat it! But I've actually only had it 3 or 4 times. I"m so excited to make it! My husband isn't a fan of the brown rice pasta, we use Quinoa pasta a lot, everyone likes it and I feel it's healthier. Have you ever had it? Do you think it would work well for this recipe?

  5. I haven't had a quinoa pasta that I am crazy about. Trader Joe's has really good brown rice pasta. Brown rice is lower in phytates and so it is a good choice if you are concerned about those since you can't soak store bought noodles.

  6. I made this tonight with Trader Joe's chicken asada and it was AMAZING!!!! Thank you!


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