This is a wonderful Mexican style chicken tortilla soup recipe! All made from scratch starting with a whole chicken and fresh vegetables to make a delicious chicken broth. Add the picked chicken and more fresh vegetables and spices to make a spicy and flavorful soup topped with fresh avocado and homemade tortilla strips. You’re gonna love it!
1 3 to 3 1/2lb. whole chicken
water to cover chicken by 1 in. ( about 1 to 1 1/2 gal. )
2 stalks celery
1/3 green pepper
1/3 red pepper
3 cloves fresh garlic
1 tbsp. salt
1 teas. pepper
1/2 teas. chili powder
1/4 teas. cumin
4 dry bay leaves
1 tbsp. dry oregano
Method: Chicken Tortilla Soup (broth)
Thoroughly wash your whole chicken and place in a large 10 qt. stock pot. Add water to cover the chicken by about 1 inch. Wash and roughly chop your vegetables into big chunks, about 1 to 2 inch pieces. These vegetables are just being used to flavor the water so they don’t have to be peeled or sliced in any certain way. Onion peels, garlic peels, seeds are all good to use when making a broth because it will all be strained out later. Add all of the ingredients to your pot. Bring your pot to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
After 1 to 1 1/2 hours remove the chicken to a plate and let it cool and then pick all of the meat off of the carcass. This will be easy because your chicken will basically fall apart. Strain your broth to remove the vegetables. Rinse your pot and return the broth to it, you can discard these vegetables as they have added all of their flavor to the broth. Let the broth cool slightly. As the chicken cooks in the broth, some of the skin will dissolve into the broth. This is fat that will make your broth cloudy so it needs to be removed. By cooling your broth slightly the fat will separate and float to the top. When it does, gently push a ladle down into the broth. You want to do this slowly, making sure your ladle is level with the broth. Let the edge of the ladle just barely pass the surface of the broth, this will allow you to remove the fat without the broth. You may want to let the broth settle after each scoop to allow the fat to return to the surface. You have just made your own homemade chicken broth.
Pablano Chili (roasted)
Roasting the chili’s adds a wonderful flavor to your soup and is fairly easy to do, here’s how.
Turn a gas burner on low to medium low heat and place your chili directly on it. Rotate your chili to basically burn the skin. This will help separate the skin from the meat or pulp of the chili making it easy to peel. You could do this under the broiler, in a super hot oven, on a barbecue or even with a torch ( that’s a restaurant trick ). I like the gas burner. Once the chili’s are blackened, place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. This will steam them further helping to separate the skin. When they are cool enough to work with peel off the skin. Insert a small knife to make an incision into the top of the chili. Put your finger into the hole with your fingernail facing towards the stem and gently cut around the top. This will make it easy to remove the seed pod. Slice the chili in half and remove any excess seeds.
Ingredients: Chicken Tortilla Soup
picked chicken ( bite size pieces )
2 pablano chili’s ( roasted, 1in. triangle )
3/4 red pepper ( 1 in. triangle )
1 small onion ( 1/4 in. slice )
3 cloves fresh garlic ( minced )
1 big stalk celery ( bias slice )
2 small carrots ( bias slice )
2 tomatoes ( 1/2 in. cube )
2 1/2 teas. salt
1/2 teas. pepper
Toppings: Chicken Tortilla Soup
2 avocados ( 1/2 in. dice )
10 6 inch corn tortillas ( strips )
Method: Chicken Tortilla Soup
Bring your broth back to the boil and add the salt, pepper, green and red peppers, onion, carrots, garlic and celery and boil for about 30 minutes covered, or until the vegetables have softened, stir occasionally. Stir in the pablano chili’s, tomatoes and chicken and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer covered for another 20 to 30 minutes, until the tomatoes start to break up. And there it is, a beautiful homemade soup from scratch. Add freshly diced avocado for a nice creamy yet firm texture to the bite that adds a great contrast to the spiciness and some crispy tortilla strips over top.
For the chips, cut about 10 6in. corn tortillas into strips that are about 2 inches long and 1/4 inches wide. Lightly fry in 350 degree oil for about 1 to 2 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels and lightly salt. These will give you much better flavor than any store bought chip.