Posts Tagged ‘Tortilla Soup’

Back with Tortilla Soup

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

I'm back!


This week I returned to cook once more with my friends at Mass Appeal. I do a lot of fun things in the winter, but I don’t cook on TV. My Hawley hill is a bit hard to negotiate in icy weather.

Ice is now a thing of the past, however (and wasn’t too much with us this past winter anyway!). The daffodils waft in the breeze, my dog Cocoa has a new spring in her step, and I’m back with co-hosts Seth Stutman and Ashley Kohl.

I straddled two holidays for my Wednesday segment. We’re still in Passover so I made my delicious matzo crunch. (I have shared the recipe before on this blog.)

The gang at Mass Appeal wanted to look ahead to Cinco de Mayo—and so did I. So I revised my previous recipe for tortilla soup. I love the way this soup came out! It’s warm enough for the cool temperatures we’re having yet spicy enough to evoke Mexico and the American southwest.

If you forget about the cheese and the tortilla crisps, it’s reasonably healthy as well.

Here is my new recipe—and below I am sharing the videos for both dishes I made.

Happy Passover. Happy Cinco de Mayo. Happy SPRING! And happy birthday to my dear friend Peter.


Tinky’s Tortilla Soup


for the soup:

extra-virgin olive oil as needed for frying the vegetables
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
6 small (6-inch) corn tortillas
2 teaspoons chili powder
1-1/2 teaspoons cumin (ground or seeds)
1 quart chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt
1 can (10 ounces) tomatoes with green chiles
1 chipotle in adobo (more if you like), roughly chopped
canola or grapeseed oil as needed for frying tortilla strips
2 cups cooked chicken in strips or chunks (optional but good)
2 cups cooked corn kernels (optional but good)

for garnish:

corn tortilla strips made from 3 of the tortillas
cilantro leaves (optional)
sour cream (optional)
shredded cheddar cheese or queso fresco (optional)
lime wedges to squeeze for juice


In a 4-quart pot or Dutch oven heat a little olive oil. Add the onions, the garlic, and the green pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender (5 minutes or so).

Cut the tortillas into strips. Add the strips from 3 tortillas to the vegetable mixture (set the others aside), along with the chili powder and the cumin. Cook, stirring occasionally, for another minute. Add the chicken stock, salt, tomatoes, and chipotle, and bring the mixture to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer the soup, almost covered, for 25 minutes.

While the soup is simmering use the remaining tortilla strips to make a garnish of fried yumminess. Let them sit on paper towels for at least 15 minutes to dry out; then fry them in oil until they are crispy. Set them aside to drain on the paper towels.

Remove the soup from the heat, and puree it with an immersion blender. (You may also use a regular blender as long as you blend carefully in batches.) Stir in the chicken and the corn, if you are using them, and return the soup to the boil. Ladle into bowls.

Garnish the soup with your homemade tortilla strips plus any other garnish of your choice. Serves 4.

And here are the videos!


Tortilla Soup

Monday, May 4th, 2009


Tomorrow  is el Cinco de Mayo, the fifth of May. This day commemorates the victory of Mexican forces over the French army at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.  It’s also a day on which we in the United States celebrate the heritage of our Mexican residents and neighbors.  

For many Mexicans this year the Cinco de Mayo holiday will be dimmed by worry about the flu epidemic. Chicken soup can’t cure colds and flu, of course, but any mother will tell you that the soup’s warmth comforts those who are sick. So let’s celebrate the ability of the Mexican people to rise above challenges—epidemiological or military—with a little chicken-based tortilla soup.


This soup comes in many different versions so feel free to change it to your taste. Some people like to put the tortilla pieces in the soup to cook for a while (to make a sort of chicken-noodle soup). If you have a fresh hot pepper, feel free to substitute it for the red pepper flakes in the recipe; I was sticking to ingredients I could purchase at my local general store so I didn’t have one on hand.


Tortilla Soup




canola oil as needed for frying

1 onion, coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

1 15-ounce can stewed tomatoes

1 4-ounce can green chiles

4 cups chicken stock (preferably homemade)

1 tablespoon chili powder

salt to taste

red pepper flakes to taste (these provide spice)

3 to 3-1/2 cups corn kernels (at this time of year I use frozen)

4 corn tortillas

2 to 3 cups shredded cooked chicken

chopped cilantro to taste

grated cheese to taste (Monterey Jack or cheddar; the first melts better and the second has more flavor)

2 limes, cut into wedges




In a small frying pan, sauté the onion and garlic in a little oil until they brown. Pop them into the blender with the canned tomatoes and the green chiles. Blend well.


Add the tomato mixture to the chicken stock. Stir in the chili powder, salt, red pepper flakes, and corn. Bring the soup to a boil; then reduce the heat, almost cover the soup, and let it simmer until the flavors have blended (at least 1/2 hour).


While the soup is cooking, cut the tortillas into small strips. Let them sit on paper towels for at least 15 minutes to dry out; then fry them in oil until they are crispy. Set them aside to drain on the paper towels.


When the soup is almost ready, stir in the chicken and cilantro. Cook for a few minutes more, until the chicken is heated through.


Ladle the soup into bowls, and have your guests add tortilla strips, cheese, and lime juice from the wedges to taste. Serves 4 to 6.