Tortilla Soup

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Ingredients

6   tablespoons EVOO
4   6-inch corn tortillas, halved and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
1   onion, chopped
4   large cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1   teaspoon ground coriander
1.5 teaspoon Better Chili Powder or whatever chili powder you have
1   teaspoon hot sauce 
32  ounces chicken broth or homemade stock
3   cups canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree (one 28-ounce can)
1   8-9 ounces corn (this is about one can)
1   bay leaf
1   teaspoons salt
8   ounces Park Loop Pulled Pork
4   ounces cheddar, grated

It’s getting to be Fall around New England, so a nice spicy soup is in order. Best part is that this recipe is another great use of our Park Loop Pulled Pork.

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Chop the onion and smash or mince the garlic. Add them to your pot with some EVOO and begin to sweat them. After about two minutes add the cumin, coriander and Better Chili Powder and cook for another three minutes.

Add the tomatoes, stock and the bay leaf and simmer about 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and very carefully puree the soup a cup or two at a time in a blender or food processor. I had to replace my stick blender after about 20 years. The new one is much stronger, so I gave it a try; right in the stock-pot. Presto! Pureed soup.

After pureeing the soup, put it back in the stock-pot and add the pulled pork and the corn and simmer for another 30 minutes.

Just before you are ready to sit down to this pot of soup prepare the tortilla strips. *You can fry them ahead of course, but I really like them hot and fresh.

Cut the tortillas into 1/4 inch strips and deep fry then in any good cooking oil. I usually have a large jug of peanut oil around just for frying things. Do a handful at a time and drain them on paper towel as they come out of the oil. If you’re doing a ton of them, you might wish to keep them warm on a baking tray in a warm oven as you go.

I serve in big flat soup bowls, sprinkle the cheese on top and then add the tortilla strips. Some people like to add some strips to the soup before serving to have some soggy strips in the soup too. In the words of David Sedaris, “… It’s not something I would want for myself, but…”

Notes: I wanted to try this recipe with the stock left over from the Park Loop Pulled Pork, but alas, I was out. I did have homemade chicken stock though ;)

Many recipes for tortilla soup use cooked chicken, but we're pork fans at TKD.

Here I used Trader Joe's canned whole kernel corn. I don't know why it's so much better than most canned corn, but we have been buying it for YEARS and it's delicious. But really this is a great time of year to get some fresh ears of corn, cook 'em up and shave the corn off the cobs. 

This entry cross-posted at Bucket’s Kitchen.
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