It’s soup season, and I am HERE FOR IT. Fall is my favorite time of the year and I’m planning on taking full advantage of it. The leaves are changing and the nights are getting colder. Pumpkin patches are popping up on every corner and I’m pulling out all my cozy sweaters. I finally get to shop for all the good cold weather clothes and I’m so excited. It’s the best time of the year. I wish this one season would last all year long. Forget summer, I’m over it. On to bigger and better weather.
Now let’s talk soup! There’s honestly nothing that sounds better to me than soup on a chilly day. The warmth instantly comforts me and puts me in a happy state of mind. This chicken tortilla soup is something I’ve been making for years now. I can remember the first time I made this soup. I threw a bunch of Mexican ingredients in a pot and let it cook. I didn’t know if it would be good but needless to say, it turned out amazing and has been a weekly staple of ours in the cold winter months. I like to make mine spicy, but you can absolutely omit the salsa verde and Serrano chili is you prefer a more mild soup. If you still want the flavor there, I’d recommend purchasing a mild salsa verde and jalapeño in stead of a Serrano. Make sure to de-seed your jalapeño. The seeds and stems of the pepper is where all the heat resides. So remove the seeds and stems and you’re good to go. You’ll still have the flavor of the pepper without getting all the spice.
CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 10 minutes
6-8 lb chicken, deconstructed
60 oz chicken broth (2 boxes)
With a sharp knife, deconstruct the chicken into pieces. Keep the backbone and leave the skin on. This is going to help deepen the flavor of the broth.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, place in the chicken pieces and chicken broth. Make sure the chicken is totally submerged in the broth. If it is not, add more broth.
Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer. Place a lid on the pot and let cook for 30 minutes. After the 30 minutes has passed, turn off heat and take the lid off. Let the chicken cool for 30 minutes or until cool enough to touch.
After the chicken is cooled, shred the chicken with your hands. Make sure to remove all the bones and skin. Discard bones and skin and put shredded chicken into a bowl.
Set aside chicken and the remaining broth to use in the soup later on.
FRIED TORTILLA STRIPS:
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
5 corn tortillas sliced into thin strips
1 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
In a small bowl, mix together spices and set aside.
In a tall sided pot, bring oil to 350 degrees. Drop in tortillas strips and fry till crispy and golden brown (a couple minutes). Keep a close eye on them as they cook fast. Take out and drain on paper towels.
Immediately toss with kosher salt, garlic powder, and chili powder.
CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
2 tbs olive oil
2 large carrots, diced
1 large sweet onion, diced
1 corn stalk, corn removed
1 jalapeño, diced small
2 roma tomatoes, diced
3.5 cups shredded chicken
60 oz. chicken broth
14 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
14 oz. can white beans, drained and rinsed
1 can hot rotel
2 limes, juice of (about 4 tbsp)
1/2 cup hot salsa verde (I use Mr, Fresnos)
8 oz. cream cheese, cut into small pieces
1 tbsp cumin
1.5 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp coriander
1/2 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp kosher salt or more to taste
** Chopped cilantro, sour cream, shredded pepper jack cheese, sliced avocado, lime wedge, and crispy fried tortillas (see recipe) for garnish
In a large pot or Dutch oven, turn heat to medium high and add in olive oil, carrot, onion and jalapeño. Sauté till onions are translucent (about 7 minutes). Add in diced tomatoes and sauté for one minute till slightly soft.
Add in chicken broth, corn, white beans, black beans, hot rotel, juice of 2 limes, salsa verde, shredded chicken and all spices. Bring to a boil then add in cream cheese. Let boil and melt for a minute. Use a whisk to break down cream cheese and combine it with the broth. Once cream cheese is completely melted, turn off heat.
Serve hot and top with sour cream, cilantro, lime wedges, avocado, pepper jack cheese and tortilla strips.