Pasta, VegetarianMalia Howe

Sopa Seca a la Anna

Pasta, VegetarianMalia Howe
Sopa Seca a la Anna

My friend, Anna, sent me this recipe a couple weeks ago and I have been excited to try it. After she told me she successfully used the Trader Joe's soy chorizo in place of real chorizo without her husband's detection, I knew it would be a winner. My husband couldn't tell last night, either, and we loved this fast, spicy, one-dish meal.Thanks, Anna!


Sopa Seca a la Anna

-adapted from America's Test Kitchen

  • 8 oz vermicelli, broken in half--here's a tip I didn't know: wrap in kitchen towel before you break it. No noodles all over your kitchen. Yippee!
  • 2 T oil (I used olive)
  • 8 oz chorizo sausage, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick (or if you are living it up as a soy fan, use a whole 12 oz tube of the Trader Joe's soy chorizo and crumble it up)
  • 1 onion,diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce. (I used a whole chile (seeds removed) and it was pretty spicy. Too spicy for many kids, I'd suspect. The chorizo already has some heat and smoke flavor, so I don't think this is a necessary addition--my point being, don't skip this recipe on account of having to go out and buy some chipotle chiles. If you have some chipotle powder in your pantry, shake 1/8-1/4 t. in)-
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 (15-oz) can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 (14.5-oz) can diced tomatoes (I did not drain them)
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth (I used 1 can, which is 1 3/4 cup and then just added a smidge of water)
  • 1/2 c.shredded Monterey Jack cheese (I used a bit more for the cheese lover I am married to)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, or more if you have it growing on your back patio!
  • sour cream or plain Greek yogurt for serving.


1. Toast vermicelli: Cook vermicelli with 1 tablespoon of oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until toasted and golden, about 4 minutes. Transfer to paper towel-lined plate and set aside. I'm going to be honest here. I'm not sure what this adds to the dish in the end. I don't particularly taste any toasted-ness in the pasta, so next time I am going to skip this step. A mom needs a few extra minutes anywhere she can get them, right???

2. Add remaining tablespoon oil to skillet and return to medium heat. Add chorizo, onion, garlic, chipotle, and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook until onion is softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Your house will smell gooooood.

3.Stir in beans, tomatoes, broth, and vermicelli. Cover and cook, stirring often and adjusting heat as needed to maintain simmer, until all liquid is absorbed and vermicelli is tender, about 10 minutes.

4.Remove from heat and sprinkle cheese over top. Cover and let sit a few minutes until cheese melts. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving and then top each bowl with a dollop of yogurt or sour cream if desired. 

Go ahead and try to tell me this does not look good....and only 1 dirty pan! Woot woot!