Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tortilla Soup to Die For

I have found the most amazing recipe for tortilla soup! I love it. And the best part is that my kids love it too. About a month ago, I made a pot of this soup, hoping that I'd have enough for two meals. No such luck. The kids gobbled it up as fast as they could. There was enough left at the end of dinner for one person for lunch the next day and everyone wanted it. Luckily, the kids had school and Eric forgot to take it to work, so I got it. I enjoyed every last drop.

I made this soup again, but this time I made a double batch. I have savored it for the last four days. The kids didn't gobble it up as quickly because it was a little too spicy for them this time. You can never tell just how hot a jalapeno is going to be. I, again, loved it.

The best part about this soup is that it is SO easy to make. You poach chicken breasts in chicken broth with onions, garlic and herbs and shred it when it's cool. Then you puree the rest of the ingredients and brown them in a pot, add the chicken broth back into the pot and simmer it. Just before serving, you add the shredded chicken back into the soup to heat it through. Serve it with crunched up tortilla chips, cheese, sour cream, diced avocado, extra jalapenos and cilantro. It takes a little time, but most of that time is spent waiting for the chicken to poach and the flavors to meld after adding the broth to the puree. Most. Amazing. Soup. Ever.

Try it, I'm sure you'll love it.

Tortilla Soup
recipe from Cook's Illustrated

2 split chicken breasts, bone-in, skin removed and trimmed of excess fat
8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 very large or 2 small onions, peeled and quartered
8-10 sprigs cilantro
1 sprig oregano (i used about 1 tsp of dried and it worked fine)
4 cloves garlic
2 medium tomatoes, cored and quartered
1/2 medium jalapeno
1 chipotle chile in adobo plus 1 tsp adobo sauce
1 tsp vegetable oil
Table salt

Combine chicken breasts, broth, 1/2 of the onion, 2 cloves garlic, herbs and 1/2 tsp salt in stock pot. Bring to boil; reduce heat to low and simmer 20 minutes or until chicken reaches 160 degrees. Remove chicken and set aside until cool enough to handle. Pour broth through fine mesh strainer, keeping broth and discarding the solids.

Puree the rest of the onions and garlic, tomatoes, jalapeno, chipotle and adobo sauce until almost smooth. Heat oil, in now empty stock pot, on high until smoking. Add puree and 1/8 tsp salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until browned, about 10 minutes. Add broth and bring to boil. Simmer 15 minutes to allow flavors to meld.

Shred chicken with fingers when cool enough to handle. Return to pot and allow to heat through, about 5 minutes.

Serve with broken tortilla chips, shredded cheese, cubed avocado, sour cream, minced jalapenos, chopped cilantro and lime wedges.

Brought to you by Shelly

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