Thursday, April 30, 2009
Tomato Tortilla Soup
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I love soup. I would even dare to say that I have a favorite soup - tortilla. I have had so many varieties of tortilla soup, both at home and out in restaurants, and they are all quite different. But they are all fantastic. I never met a tortilla soup I didn't like. And now I have one more to add to the list.
This is a simple and satisfying soup with a hint of spiciness and a rainbow of Mexican flavors. The texture is perfect - velvety smooth with the occasional chunk of tomato. The crisp of the home made tortilla chips is a beautiful contrast. The avocado's creaminess helps to finish off the balance of flavors. If you've never had tortilla soup before, this is a great one to start with. With each bite you'll find yourself thinking of all the possibilities this sub-genre of soup holds.
All I have to say is, when there are no leftovers, you know something went wonderfully right in the kitchen.
Tomato Tortilla Soup
adapted from Ellie Krieger's The Food You Crave
1 corn tortilla, halved and cut into strips
pinch of sea salt
1 teaspoon EVOO
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 large clove garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups low-sodium veggie or chicken broth
one 14.5 ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, with juice
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 avocado, pitted and sliced
1. Preheat toaster oven (or oven) to 375. Spray a baking sheet lightly with nonstick spray, and put the tortilla strips on the tray. Spray the tortilla chips lightly as well. Sprinkle with salt, and toss around to coat. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until browned and crispy. Set aside.
2. Heat EVOO in a large straight-sided skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cumin and cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes, or until onion is translucent and just barely starting to brown.
3. Add broth, tomatoes, jalapeno, and oregano. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the lime juice and turn off the heat.
4. Puree soup with immersion blender (or preferred method), but leave many chunks of tomato for texture. Serve topped with cilantro, tortilla chips, and sliced avocado.
It's pretty hard to go wrong with this combination of flavors. This will definitely be a repeat performance. Enjoy!