|From Nola Cuisine|
When trying to figure out what to make for dinner last night, my wife suggested Mexican, and I had a taste for soup, so we met in the middle of the road.
Tortilla Soup is an uncomplicated soup that is just bursting with flavor! I puree my Tortilla Soup then garnish with the texture (as well as flavor and color) components. You’ll want to make homemade Tortilla Chips for this, no Tostitos please! Besides, once you make your own Tortilla Chips and find out how much better they are, you’ll never buy them again! We’ll start with the Chips:
Homemade Corn Tortilla Chips
2 1/2 Cups Vegetable Oil or Lard
A Baking Sheet covered with a double layer of Paper Towel
Heat the fat to 360 degrees F in a 2 quart saucepan. Cut the amount of Tortillas desired into quarters. If just making them for this recipe I used Chips from 4 Corn Tortillas (plus some strips for garnish). When the oil is to temperature, drop in about 5 or 6 pieces at a time, frying until just about golden brown. A good way to gauge if they’re done is when the heavy bubbling in the oil subsides; they won’t take long. Remove them to the baking sheet to drain with a slotted metal utensil and sprinkle lightly with salt. Repeat until you have your desired amount of chips.
**Note – Whenever I fry Tortilla Chips I always make some strips to use for a garnish. Simply Cut about 3-4 Tortillas into thin 1/8 – 1/4″ thin strips, then fry as for the Chips, though they won’t take as long.
Tortilla Soup Recipe
2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil or Lard
1 Cup Chopped Spanish Onion
1 Tbsp Chopped Garlic
2 Tbsp Chopped Jalapeno
1 Cup Chopped Fresh Tomato
16 Corn Tortilla Chips (as described above)
1 Bay Leaf
1 dried Guajillo chile
1 dried Ancho chile
4 Cups Rich Chicken Stock
2 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Oregano
1 Cup Raw Chicken cut into bite sized pieces, I use thighs
(Toss the Chicken with 1 Tbsp Chopped Cilantro and the Juice of 1/2 Lime)
Kosher Salt and Black Pepper to taste
1/2 Large Avocado or one whole small (Diced just before serving)
3 Tbsp Chopped Cilantro
4 Tbsp Finely Diced Fresh Tomato
A Lime Wedge
Heat the oil over medium heat in a dutch oven or large saucepan. Add the Onion and saute until wilted. Add the Garlic and Jalapeno and cook for 1 minute, add the tomato and cook for 1 minute more. Crush the Tortilla Chips over the mixture and stir in, cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the Bay Leaf, chiles, Chicken Stock and Fresh Oregano; Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the Bay Leaf and chiles and Puree with an immersion Blender or in a regular (heat proof) blender, taste for seasonings, add salt and pepper to taste. Return the soup to low heat and add the Chicken, the soup is finished when the Chicken is cooked through.
I serve this soup in a wide shallow Soup Bowl garnished with the Tomato, Avocado and Cilantro. Stand up a large Pile of Tortilla Strips in the middle of the bowl, and spritz each serving with Fresh Lime Juice. Ice cold cerveza Sol with a lime wedge stuffed into the bottle is a perfect accompaniment.
Be sure and check out my ever growing Index of Creole & Cajun recipes!