It’s a soggy day in the Pacific Northwest, well, specifically Seattle. But spring is here and summer is just around the corner, with those sunny previews just wetting our appetite for the warm months ahead. I’m craving fresh fruits and vegetables, minutes out of the garden. And though they won’t come from my family’s garden for awhile yet, I can make do with locally grown produce for now.
This recipe is one we enjoy, and it works well for my fat, calorie, and sodium daily allotments. It is especially useful when I’ve recently roasted a whole chicken and have leftovers — or I’ve bought a rotisserie chicken from Costco. While I love the cream based tortilla soup at the restaurant, this is a pretty good substitute.
I have roasted my corn on the cob and the peppers until slightly charred. In a pinch for time? Use frozen corn and dice the peppers without roasting, although the roasting gives the soup a unique flavor. And to kick up the spices, add your favorite hot pepper along with the green pepper, some red chili flakes, and you’re good to go.
Chicken Tortilla Soup
1 onion; chopped
3 carrots; chopped
3 celery stalks; chopped
3 cloves garlic; chopped
1 large green pepper ; roasted and chopped
4 cups chicken stock; homemade (about 2 cans if you haven’t any on hand)
3 cups water
1 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
4 corn tortillas; sliced into 1-inch strips
2 tomatoes; diced
1 avocado; diced
3 scallions; sliced on diagonal
1 Sweet Corn on the cob; roasted and kernels cut off of the cob
1 1/2 cup rotisserie chicken; shredded into large chunks
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
3 sprigs fresh oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
Saute onion, carrots, celery, garlic and pepper in 1 teaspoon of olive oil until translucent. Add chili powder and cumin and saute until fragrant. Add chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil.
Once the soup as come to a boil, add the corn tortilla strips and continue to simmer about 10-15 minutes, or until the tortillas have begun to shred or dissolve.
Then add the rotisserie chicken, roasted corn kernels, tomatoes, scallions, avocado and fresh springs of oregano and chopped cilantro. Season with salt and pepper as desired. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
To garnish each individual bowl of steaming soup; top with about 1 tablespoon shredded cheddar cheese, 1 tablespoon light sour cream, cilantro and fried tortilla slices or 3 tortilla chips.