Chicken Tortilla Soup

Makes about 9 cups, serving 6

Soup :
3 split bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts or 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs , skin removed and well trimmed of excess fat
8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 very large white onion (about 1 pound), trimmed of root end, quartered, and peeled
4 medium cloves of garlic , peeled
2 sprigs epazote , fresh, or 8 to 10 sprigs fresh cilantro plus 1 sprig fresh oregano
table salt
2 medium tomatoes , cored and quartered
1/2 medium jalapeño pepper (I used less jalapeno because I don’t like very spicy food)
1 chipotle chile en adobo , plus up to 1 tablespoon adobo sauce  (I only used 1/2 of the chipotle, but I used 1 T. of the adobo sauce)
1 can white shoepeg corn, or your favorite fresh or frozen corn
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Garnishes :

1 lime , cut into wedges
1 Hass avocado , diced fine
8 ounces cotija cheese , crumbled, or Monterey Jack cheese, diced fine
fresh cilantro leaves
jalapeno pepper , minced
Mexican crema or sour cream

2. FOR THE SOUP: While tortilla strips bake, bring chicken, broth, 2 onion quarters, 2 garlic cloves, epazote, and 1/2 teaspoon salt to boil over medium-high heat in large saucepan; reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until chicken is just cooked through, about 20 minutes. Using tongs, transfer chicken to large plate. Pour broth through fine-mesh strainer; discard solids in strainer. When cool enough to handle, shred chicken into bite-sized pieces; discard bones.

3. Puree tomatoes, 2 remaining onion quarters, 2 remaining garlic cloves, jalapeño, chipotle chile, and 1 teaspoon adobo sauce in food processor until smooth. Heat oil in Dutch oven over high heat until shimmering; add tomato/onion puree and 1/8 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture has darkened in color, about 10 minutes. Stir strained broth into tomato mixture, bring to boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer to blend flavors, about 15 minutes. Taste soup; if desired, add up to 2 teaspoons additional adobo sauce. Add shredded chicken and corn and simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes. To serve, place portions of tortilla strips in bottom of individual bowls and ladle soup into bowls; pass garnishes separately.

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