December 15, 2014

chicken tortilla soup

Mmmmm.... I have a fondness for chicken tortilla soup and this one may just top the charts.  The toppings make it, so don't skimp or forget to add them to the grocery list... after all they are just as important! :)

Servings 6-8
Total Time 1 hour

  • 2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (if you are using organic, which I would HIGHLY recommend, then you may want to use 3 since they are quite a bit smaller)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon course salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1, 10 ounce can diced tomatoes 
  • 1, 4 ounce can diced green chilies, optional
  • 32 ounces chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 3 cups cooked black beans (1 cup dry/2 cans, drained) 
  • 3 tablespoons cornmeal 
for the garnishes (use a few or use all of them, but the garnishes really make the soup!)
  • sour cream
  • diced avocado
  • salsa 
  • grated cheese
  • chopped fresh cilantro 
  • crushed tortilla chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

 Mix cumin, chili pepper, garlic powder, and salt. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil on chicken breasts, then sprinkle a small amount of spice mix on both sides. Set aside the rest of the spice mix.  Place chicken breasts on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until chicken is done. Use two forks, or your fingers, to shred chicken. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a dutch oven or large pot, over medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  Add onions, green pepper, minced garlic, and the rest of the spice mix. Cook for 4-5 minutes.

Pour in the tomatoes (juice also!), green chilies (if you are using them), chicken stock, tomato paste, and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 25 minutes, uncovered.

Whisk the cornmeal with 1/4 cup of water. Pour into the soup along with the chicken and black beans, then simmer for an additional 20 minutes. Check seasonings, adding more if needed.  Add more chili powder if it needs more spice, and be sure not to under salt.

Turn off heat and allow to sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

shown served with cheese quesadillas
Ladle into bowls, then top with your garnishes, and enjoy!!!

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