Soup’s On Sundays / Chicken Tortilla

Surprisingly enough, Chicken Tortilla soup turned out to be one of my favorite adventures yet, and the outcome, absolutely delicious.

Let me start by saying that I’ve had my fair share of Chicken Tortilla soup. It’s one of my favorite things to order at Mexican restaurants, I’ve lived in Texas, explored the border and traveled to Mexico (not Cancun) more than once or twice. To date, my favorite version of Chicken Tortilla was had on the beaches of Nuevo Vallarta in 2008 in a building with no doors, open windows, cracks in the floor and ceiling, stray cats and dogs abound and no English to be heard within a 25-minute walk along the shore of the Pacific.

I would love to say that this recipe beat that, but I’d absolutely be lying. I will say, however, that for the quality of ingredients available, this is one of the best compositions of Chicken Tortilla that I’ve had the pleasure of tasting, let alone preparing. When all is said and done, what you’ll end up with is a filling, colorful, borderline too spicy and chili-esque Chicken Tortilla soup. And in case you needed another reason to try it: It’s ridiculously easy to make. Let’s get started.

1 Onion (chopped)
4 Garlic Cloves (minced)
Olive Oil
2 tsps Chili Powder
1 tsp Oregano
1 can (28 oz) Crushed Tomatoes
32 oz. Chicken Broth
1 can (8.5 oz) Whole Kernel Corn
1 can White Hominy
1 can (4 oz) Pickled Green Chile Peppers (chopped)
1 can (15 oz) Black Beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro (chopped)
2.5 cups of Chicken (cut into bite-sized pieces)
2 Limes (halved)
Crushed Tortilla Chips
Three Avocados (diced)
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Sour Cream (optional)

Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
Cook Time:
25 minutes
5-7 servings

Kitchen Utensils
Large soup pot
Cutting board
Measuring cups
Can opener
Mixing spoon

To start, cover the bottom of the large soup pot in a thin layer of olive oil and heat over medium-high. When the oil is warm, add the garlic and onion and sauté until soft and almost transparent. Next, stir in the chili powder, oregano, crushed tomatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes. If you taste it here, you’re going to feel a sense of doubt. It will mostly look like a tomato broth without a whole lot of flavor. This is normal. It’s gets better, I promise. Keep going.

Hominy, chicken, chiles and corn waiting for their turn to dive in.

Before adding the rest of the ingredients, I wanted to share a tip with you to make this process faster. You can save yourself a lot of time if you don’t have to prepare the chicken beforehand. If you want to grill up two chicken breasts and then cut them, that’s totally fine. Otherwise, consider buying a rotisserie-style chicken from your local grocery store. That way you’re not buying the processed pre-packaged/pre-cooked chicken, and you still get all the flavor without the additional effort. Oh, and you can also use the rest of the chicken to brew your own chicken stock – which is what I’ll be using for next week’s soup. But for now, let’s keep at it.

Now you’ll want to add the corn, hominy, chopped chiles, black beans, cilantro and diced chicken. Continue to simmer for 10 minutes. If you taste it now, you should be pleasantly surprised. The broth that you sampled earlier has completely transformed into a Mexican delight. But it’s missing one thing, for good measure and a spark of authenticity. Take those two halved limes and squeeze as much juice as you can get out of them into the soup. In my world, Chicken Tortilla soup isn’t complete without lime.

Beautiful soup, just wait until the avocados are added in!

Voila. It’s time to serve. Here’s the fun part. Get your assembly line of tortilla chips, shredded cheese, avocado and sour cream ready. First the chips, then the cheese, then a couple of avocado chunks and topped with a dab of sour cream.

Tengo hambre. Me encanta este sopa!


~ by wintersm on April 12, 2011.

2 Responses to “Soup’s On Sundays / Chicken Tortilla”

  1. This soup was the tits!

  2. Loved the leftovers! Add some mexican cheese and avocado to soak up the spiciness.. ohh just perfect!

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