We've been in the kitchen a lot these last few weeks trying out new recipes (Indian Spiced Lentil Soup, above), mixing up some old recipes (peanut butter cookies + whole wheat choco chip, below).Some worked out great, some not so much. We made some old family tried & true favorites (hello, cassarole!) For the one rainy day we had this week, we decided to make an old favorite: Tortilla Soup with Chicken & Avocado. If it's cold where you are, you should make this. I'm clinging on to the one day of rain we had as we are already expecting an 80+ degree day tomorrow. Eighyeiyei!
Tortilla Soup with Chicken & Avocado
(Makes 4 servings)
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced or chopped
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 C + 2 tsp. fresh cilantro
1 C drained canned plum tomatoes
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
4 C Chicken stock
1-2 skinless, boneless chicken breast cut into bite sized strips
salt & pepper
1 dried ancho chile*
1 avocado, pitted, peeled & diced
1/4 C shredded cheese (monterey jack, cheddar, etc.,.)
2 tsp. fresh lime juice
In a frying pan over medium heat, warm 1 Tbsp of oil. Add onion, garlic & 2 tsp. cilantro and saute until golden brown, about 10 minutes. In a blender or food processor, combine the sauteed mixture and the tomatoes and process until smooth.
In the same frying pan over medium-high heat, warm another 1 Tbsp. of the oil. Add the tomato mixture & cumin. Cook stirring frequently, until thickened about 5-6 minutes.
Transfer the mixture to a large saucepan over medium-low heat and add the stock. Simmer until thickened about 20 minutes. Add the chicken strips & simmer until they are just opaque throughout, 2-3 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt & pepper.
To serve, ladle into warmed bowls. Add tortilla chips, cilantro, avocado, cheese & lime juice.
*If you don't have access to an ancho chile, just skip it. It doesn't make a difference in the overall goodness of the soup as it's just used sprinkled on top. The original recipe calls for making your own tortilla strips for the top of the soup, but just grab a bag of lime & chile chips and break them up and add to the top of the soup.