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Sunday, September 30, 2007

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Tonight I am making Chicken Tortilla Soup. Soups are so easy, and this one is filling, but is as fattening or non-fattening as you make it. Also, please note that this can be made Vegetarian; the substitutions are obvious, but I'll detail them at the end.

This soup is as spicy or mild as YOU make it.


* Skinless chicken breasts
* 1 fresh tomato
* 1 -2 cans diced tomatoes; (I use Ro-tel cilantro-lime and diced chiles flavor. Use the same 2 or mix the flavors...either way it's good. The latter is spicier)
* 1 small or medium chopped onion
* spices: cilantro (fresh is best!), paprika, celery salt, fresh garlic, fajita spices....check your cupboard! Any and all Mexican spices will work, all according to your taste.
* Salsa - add your favorite. I love using Mrs. Renfro's Roasted Garlic salsa. It is on the mild-to-medium side of spiciness, but cooks well into the soup. I recommend using what you have in the house or just buy your favorite.
* sour cream
* shredded cheese - purchased Mexican blend, or cheddar, monterrey jack, nacho, etc.
* Tortilla chips or Tortillas **
* Fresh avocado
* Serrano pepper or jalapeno - diced, seeds removed

* Secret Ingredient: Tiger Sauce. (Carried by Cub Foods, which is under the umbrella of SuperValue)

1. Chicken - either buy chicken tenders or cube a package of boneless/skinless chicken breasts. (note: you may also cube chicken after it's cooked)
2. Put chicken in pan, cover with water. Make sure chicken is completely submerged, and extra water is will cook off.
3. Bring to boil. When chicken appears to be done, remove pan from heat, remove chicken from water. Important!: Reserve the water - this is your broth (or base). **
4. Add the canned diced tomatoes, your chosen flavor.
5. Add chopped onion and chopped fresh tomato, cilantro, and chosen spices
6. Simmer.

**** HINT: You may simmer for an hour or more, or less time; if you like your onions to be crispier, either add them later or cook less. You may play with the time; all the ingredients are cooked so if all you do is heat and serve, you'll still have a good, flavorful soup. I prefer a longer cooking time so that I can play with the ingredients and the flavor. This would be a good crock-pot soup for that reason.

7. When you have determined that the soup is "done", remove from heat. You have two choices:

* blend the soup to smooth it out. I use a hand mixer, but a blender can also be used.
* serve as a "chunky" soup. If you serve as "chunky" see next step.

8. Add the cubed chicken and cook for a few minutes to reheat it.

9. Serve soup immediately over tortillas. Add sour cream, avocado, and cheese as condiments.


** Tortillas: If you use fresh tortillas, you will need to create your own chips. Cook the tortillas in a spray of vegetable oil in a fry pan or grill, then break up into chips. Otherwise, just purchase pre-made chips. Old Dutch is common, Doritos will add a different flavor.

** For a milder soup, omit the serrano pepper, use mild or no salsa, and choose a brand of diced tomatoes without spice. You may also use more fresh tomatoes in lieu of the canned stuff.

** VEGETARIANS AND VEGANS: In lieu of making chicken and stock, just use Vegetable stock. All of the ingredients listed above are made organically. I'm not sure about Tiger Sauce, so check the label.

*** ADDITIONS: You may add corn, celery or other veggies to this soup.

Please make suggestions or addtions in the combox.

As it is, this is soup I would serve Jesus if He came to my house. And anyone else. It's not terribly expensive, it's easy, adaptable, and gosh darn it, people like it!

!Buen Provecho!


Laura The Crazy Mama said...

If you added corn, it might be good to add some black beans for a kind of Southwest flavor?

Terry Nelson said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! can I come over?

Adoro te Devote said...

Laura ~ Well, for those who LIKE beans, it would be a good addition. This is not a recipe that traditionally adds beans, but it could work. Personallly, I hate beans with a passion..if you like them...enjoy! (I would just not add them liberally; people like me like this soup BECAUSE there are no beans but have all the other flavors.)

Terry ~ Come on over! :-)

uncle jim said...

beans /legumes are high on the list of good things to eat for better health, you know

end some are a musical fruit -

beans, beans, the musical fruit..."

the rhyme suggests

Adoro te Devote said...

Beans, beans, the musical fruit.
The more you eat, the more you toot.
The more you toot, the better you feel.
So eat your beans with every meal!

My Grandpa used to quote that every time we went up to visit them.

I've always hated beans, and I didn't grow out of it. To this day, I pick beans out of my chili.

"Southwestern" and "Mexican" food, contrary to popular opinion, is NOT synonymous with "includes beans". Unfortunately, people think so. While beans were prolific in Mexico, they were USUALLY on the side; because the Mexicans are a wise people, and they realize that more people prefer spice to the texture of beans. Beans can be omitted; spice cannot. Beans are great on the side and can be mixed in. Spice has to be cooked with the dish.

Beans may be healthy; but they'll never save my life because I'll never eat them.

But those of you who enjoy..well, I'd cook beans and peas for you until the sun sets, but they'll be served as a side dish ONLY in my house.

karyn said...

this comment is not related to your post, but here's a news update.

Singapore has become the new hub for embryonic stem-cell research for American scientists who can't continue with their work.

”Thanks to liberal laws in that field and our equally liberal government, we are now emerging as a hotbed for stem cell research.

Scientists say President Bush’s veto last month of legislation to raise limits on federal financing for stem cell research was the latest in a series of setbacks, which they say are stifling the research environment and eroding the edge in basic medical science that the United States has held since World War II."

“It was part of the overall strategy of diversifying the base of our economy and, more specifically, adding on a research-intensive sector,” said Beh Swan Gin, who heads the Biomedical Sciences Group at the Economic Development Board.”

Economic progress paid for by the blood of what they do not wish to recognize as a life, but rather a ball of mere cells.

The embryos by the way are derived either from "unwanted" or "discarded" leftovers from IVF treatments or abortions.

The devil's money-making playground my country has become.

“What has created this opportunity? President George W. Bush put drastic restraints on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research in the U.S. three years ago because many religious conservatives oppose use of the cells, which often come from embryos left over after in-vitro fertilization. Given the different religious traditions of Asia, the debate isn’t as heated. “We don’t have an ethical roadblock,” says D. Balasubramanian, chairman of the Indian government’s stem cell task force.”

Michelle said...

I think it would be kosher if you didn't top it with the sour cream or cheese (can't mix dairy and meat). But I think jesus would eat it anyway.

Never say never about beans. I "never" liked beans...and then craved them during my 3rd pregnancy. Now I enjoy most beans. Ya never know.

Michelle said...

Sorry, Lord, I didn't check before submitting. Normally, I do capitalize Your name.

Cathy_of_Alex said...

Adoro: This sounds really good. If I make it, I'll let you know how it turns out. You did not steer me wrong with the Creole Garlic Soup so I'm sure this will be great too!

Terry: Gosh, if home cookin' is all it takes to get you out of the house, I should have fired up the oven months ago!

Cathy_of_Alex said...

Adoro: Oh, and thanks for the grocery store shoutout! ;-)

Theocoid said...

Tiger Sauce is fine for vegetarians and vegans. I started using it when I was a vegetarian.

You know, instead of breaking the torillas after you fry them, you could quarter them first. That's how the Mexican restaurant at which I worked did it.

Vincenzo said...

Yum. I love tortilla soup.

Maureen said...

It's kosher if you cook it in a kosher pot. :)