because quite a few people have asked. & because it's yummy, and i like sharing yumm...
because quite a few people have asked.
& because it's yummy, and i like sharing yumminess with the world. ;)
It's practically summer in my neck of the woods (thanks, SoCal), and I'm all about that easy- breezy
beautiful Mediterranean food + smoothies all day (think lentils on salad with tzatziki and let's call it a night, shall we?), but when it comes to cooking, a soup is always right. I'm constantly improvising, adding, and re-adding, but this one specifically is one I've decided to write down and stick with.
This one is particularly enjoyable to my family because we get two meals out of one chicken- we just use the actual chicken the night before for dinner, then take the leftovers and boil them for both the broth and chicken shreds. However, if you like extra chicken in your soup, you can always go a different route and boil your chicken in the broth and seasoning until it's ready for you to shred. Either way, it's delicious. If I do say so myself.
Easy-Breezy Chicken Tortilla Soup
1- Your leftover chicken (or between two and four chicken breasts and six- eight cups of chicken broth)
2- 2 cans of black beans (Since I'm a self- proclaimed Trader-Joe's addict, I go for their Cuban-Style black beans. So good.)
3- Olive oil
4- 1 chopped onion.
5- About two cups of corn (again with the TJ's thing. ^^ Their frozen corn is the best thing ever, beat only by fresh corn. But if you choose to use canned corn, make sure to drain and rinse it.)
6- 1 cup chopped Cilantro.
7- As much avocado as you like or dislike.
8- Corn chips. If you're fancy and/or have time on your hands, you can grill your own corn tortillas.
9- Mexican cheese or pepperjack cheese, shredded
10- A few mashed garlic cloves to taste.
11- 1 jalepeno
12- Your favorite jar of salsa. I prefer green salsa, and so happen to use a local brand; you can use whatever you prefer. Obviously if you prefer more spice, use a spicier salsa, and if you prefer less, I might just go with a jalapeno or two and call it a day.
13 - An optional lime wedge or two or five.
First things first: If you choose the easy-breezy route, make sure you have boiled your leftover chicken bones in water until you have broth and the remainder of your chicken. Separate, skim, and remove the chicken from the bones. Honestly, it's always surprising exactly how much chicken is left on there. Set aside for step two.
1- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan until it's hot. Add chopped onion until translucent, and then add the garlic and jalapeno.
2- At this point, if you're using frozen corn, I add that first to get a nice blackening on it. Otherwise, you can add your broth and chicken, corn and beans, and bring it to a simmer.
3- Add your cilantro and whatever other spice seizes your fancy- I add a bit of red pepper flakes, dried cilantro as well (and this will totally do if you don't have any fresh on hand), and a few surprise spices of my own. ;) And add that salsa, of course. This would be the time to grab a tasting spoon and adjust your seasoning. More salt? More pepper? More garlic? Go for it.
5- Squeeze one of your limes into pot of soup to let it infuse. You can also take time to sniff the aroma at this point, because it's that good.
4- Serve over a little of that cheese. Sprinkle more cheese to that top, along with crunched corn chips, sliced avocado, and cilantro. Squeeze some more lime for a kick. And enjoy the yumminess and delightfulness.
What's one of your favorites? I'd love to hear!
- xx -