Chicken Tortilla Soup

I’m easing back in after a two-year-plus hiatus with a staple Mexican comfort food, chicken tortilla soup.  The Matador is feeling a little under the weather and asked for some hot and hearty soup.  I got the recipe from the Pioneer Woman and adapted it with a few minor changes.  I increased, substituted, and added ingredients based on what I had available in my pantry and to give it a little more of a kick.

I have to confess.  I got a little lazy keeping up with posts because it just got so time-consuming.  With two kids and a full-time job, busting out my big honkin’ DSLR for every step to then processing the RAW images became too much work.  I’m now just shooting with either my iPhone or my little point-and-shoot.  Still does the job.

Ingredients:
  • 2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1-1/2 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 cup red bell pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cans of tomato and jalapeno salsa
  • 2 cans of tomato sauce
  • 42 ounces, fluid sodium chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato bouillon with chicken
  • 3 cups hot water
  • 2 cans (15 oz. can) black beans, drained
  • 3 tablespoons of Masa
  • 5 whole corn tortillas, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 2 ears of corn – stripped
Garnishes:
  • Sour cream (if that’s your thing)
  • Diced avocado
  • Diced red onion
  • Grated Monterey Jack cheese
  • Cilantro

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix cumin, chili pepper, garlic powder, and salt. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil on chicken breasts, and then sprinkle a small amount of spice mix on both sides. Set aside the rest of the spice mix.

Place chicken breasts on a baking sheet.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until chicken is done. Use two forks to shred chicken. Set aside. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a pot over medium high heat. Add onions, red pepper, green pepper, and garlic – I forgot the garlic this time but it was still very delicious. Stir and begin cooking, then add the rest of the spice mix. Stir to combine, then add shredded chicken and stir.

Pour in tomato and jalapeno salsa, chicken stock, tomato sauce, 2 cup of water, black beans, and corn. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes, uncovered.

Mix masa with about a cup of water and blend well. Pour into the soup, then simmer for an additional 30 minutes. Check seasonings, adding more if needed—add more chili powder if it needs more spice. Turn off heat and allow to sit for 15 to 20 minutes before serving. Five minutes before serving, gently stir in tortilla strips.  I like to add the strips directly to the bowls as I serve so if you have any leftovers, it won’t get soggy.

Ladle into bowls, then top with sour cream (if that’s your thing), diced red onion, diced avocado, grated cheese, and chopped cilantro. Mmm…. delicious!