Chile Lime Chicken Soup with Fried Tortillas and Cilantro
Winter is the best time for soup -- especially really really spicy soup that makes your eyes water just a little. This chile-lime soup was inspired by this month's Everyday Food by Martha Stewart, and included several of the goodies we brought home from our trip to Mexico.
These are some little tortillas that crushed on the way home in our suitcases (shocking right!...Who puts crispy tortillas in their suitcases?!?) Anyway, they are corn based and make a perfect complement for the spicy broth. You could substitute any corn tortilla baked in the oven and then fried.
The base of the soup is a chicken stock, made from the bones, skin and leftover meat from a roast chicken. Add the bones and skin to a large stock pot (I used a 10 qt pot) and fill 3/4 of the pot with water. Simmer on low for at least 1 hour. Skim foam off the top, let cool and place in the fridge. After the stock cools, a layer of foam and fat will rise to the top. Skim this fat off, discard it and then begin adding your soup yummies. I added:
Big shredded chunks of leftover roast chicken (about 2 cups)
1 can corn (you can certainly use fresh or frozen)
1 small onion, sauteed (another leftover fro roast chicken meal)
1 large can of diced tomatoes with juice
Now it is time to really spice up the soup. I spiced the soup to taste, so these amounts are just recommendations -- spice it the way you like it! Remember I used a 10 qt stock pot. It your pot is larger or smaller, adjust amounts accordingly.
4 T Paprika
3-4 T Chili Powder or ground chile (Not sure exactly what to call it as I used an unnamed chili powder I bought in Mexico)
3-4 T Ground Chipotle
2 T salt (add more if the soup needs it when serving)
pinch of cayenne
Allow the soup to simmer at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours.
Without the toppings, this soup is just a spicy chicken soup. To really make it special, give it some texture with your choice of toppings. Martha added sliced avocado, cilantro and fried tortilla strips. I added strips of cheese, cilantro and lightly fried my Mexican tortillas. If you are using store bought tortillas, make sure you bake them to a light crisp. Serve them baked or toss them in a saute pan with a little oil to fry them. To finish off the dish, sprinkle a tiny bit of lime juice on the top on your soup (1/2 a small lime or less). The citrus flavor cuts the heat of the soup. yummy yummy - eat up!
What have you been cooking to warm up this winter??