Whenever it turns out to be a gloomy day, I get this huge craving for a hot bowl of soup. My Chicken Tortilla Soup with all its wonderful toppings fits the bill perfectly.
Prep Time: 40 minutes (this includes the garnish and toppings for the soup)
Cook Time: 48 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 28 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 6-quart Dutch oven with a lid, mesh sieve, 2-cup measuring cup, measuring spoons
Ingredients For Roasted Chicken:
2 bone-in, skin-on, chicken breasts
4 tablespoons of olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
Ingredients For Tortilla Strips:
1 package of corn tortillas
some non- stick cooking spray
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
Ingredients For the Soup:
2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
2 quarts of chicken broth, unsalted
2 cups of water (reserve 1/2 cup for cornmeal)
1 red bell pepper, seeded, large dice
1 green bell pepper, seeded, large dice (substitute green bell pepper)
1 onion, large dice
1 Fresno chili, seeded and minced (substitute jalapeno pepper)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup of green onions, sliced, (the white and light green parts)
1 (11-ounce) can of Ro*Tel (tomatoes with green chilies)
1 (15-ounce) can of fire-roasted tomatoes with juice
1 (15-ounce) can of black beans, low sodium, drained and rinsed
1 (11-ounce) can of white shoepeg corn, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
3 tablespoons of cornmeal
1 tablespoon of chili powder
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
2 tablespoons of dried oregano
1 1/2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup of cilantro, roughly chopped
1 cup of green onions tops, thinly sliced
1 lime, cut into wedges
1 (8-ounce) package of shredded Colby Jack cheese
1/4 cup of red onion, finely diced
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F.
Start by spraying both sides of the corn tortillas with non-stick cooking spray. Stack the tortillas on top of each other slicing them into strips. Divide the strips in half giving you two equal portions. Arrange the tortilla strips into a single layer on each baking sheet pan. Sprinkle with Kosher salt. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Allow the tortilla strips to cool for 15 minutes before placing them into a large resealable bag.
Adjust oven temperature to 350-degreed F.
On a rimmed baking sheet pan place two chicken breasts. Rub the top of each breast with olive oil. Sprinkle each one with Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Allow the chicken to cool for 30 minutes before removing the skin and chicken from the bone. Use your hand to shred the chicken. Transfer to a large platter. Set aside.
In the meantime, while the chicken is in the oven, prep all the vegetables, open all the cans, drain the corn and black beans for the soup.
In a preheated Dutch oven, over medium-high heat, add vegetable oil. To the oil, add dried oregano, ground cumin, chili powder, and tomato paste, stir to combine. Stirring frequently, cook for 1 minute to allow the spices and tomato paste to bloom. Next, add the onions, diced peppers, Fresno chili, garlic, bay leaf, Kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper, stir to combine.
Stirring occasionally, cook for 5 to 7 minutes giving everything a chance to marry and soften. Next, add the fire-roasted tomatoes with juice, Ro*Tel, black beans, and corn, and cooked shredded chicken, stir to combine. Add chicken broth and water, again stir to combine. Bring the soup up to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, simmer for 35 to 40 minutes.
During the last 15 minutes of cooking, in a measuring cup, add 3 tablespoons of cornmeal to 1/2 a cup of water, mix well. Pour this mixture into the simmering hot soup, stir to combine.
Turn the heat off, remove the bay leaf.
To serve, ladle the soup into a porcelain serving bowl. Add all or any combination of the green onions tops, chopped cilantro, finely diced red onion, cheese, and crispy tortilla strips. Serve with a lime wedge.
There you have it, my Chicken Tortilla Soup.