{Sopa De Tortilla} Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe

{Sopa De Tortilla} Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe
{Sopa De Tortilla} Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe | https://saltandwind.com Without doubt one of the best known Mexican dishes is tortilla soup whether you've ordered it at your local TexMex joint or tasted in the last time you trave...
Skill
Course
Cuisine
Ingredients
17
Hands-On Time
15 minutes
Total Time
1 hour
Yield
12 cups
Servings
6 to 8
Season
{Sopa De Tortilla} Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe | https://saltandwind.com
Skill
Beginner
Course
Dinner, Soup
Cuisine
Mexican
Ingredients
17
Hands-On Time
15 minutes
Total Time
1 hour
Yield
12 cups
Servings
6 to 8
Diet
Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free
{Sopa De Tortilla} Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe | https://saltandwind.com

Without doubt one of the best known Mexican dishes is tortilla soup whether you've ordered it at your local TexMex joint or tasted in the last time you traveled to Mexico. It's no surprise because classic tortilla soup has origins that date back to Aztec times so, to say it's been around a minute, is an understatement.

Like the chicken soup of Mexico, Chicken Tortilla Soup is comforting, healthy, and in that there are as many versions as there are abuelitas. What we know is that we love ours blended rather than soupy -- even if it makes some of our food friends crinkle their nose in disapproval -- and we like to mix it up, garnishing not only with the more traditional toppings of tortilla strips, avocado, and chees but also with fresh radishes, scallions, and wedges of lime.

Before we share our recipe for creamy chicken tortilla soup, here is some background on this classic Mexican soup.

Bowl Of Tortilla Soup On A Table

What Are The Classic Mexican Soups? 

First of all, you may be surprised to learn that tortilla soup is a rather old school recipe and is considered one of the classic Mexican soups along with Sopa De Fideo, Sopa Poblana, and Sopa De Elote -- many of which come from the central part of Mexico.

So, Where Does Tortilla Soup Come From?

Authentic chicken tortilla soup -- also known as sopa Azteca or Aztec soup -- is a recipe that supposedly, as the name suggests, dates back to Aztec times. It's believed that the origin of Mexican chicken tortilla soup is from central Mexico likey from areas where corn has been grown for millennia -- we're talking Mexico City or the nearby region of Tlaxcala. The most basic (and classic) version of the soup is believed to be a chili-and-tomato-laced chicken broth that's served with crispy fresh-fried tortilla strips.

Okay, Then How Do You Make Chicken Tortilla Soup From Scratch?

Making authentic chicken tortilla soup is actually pretty simple. Some recipes have you make a soup base with dried chilis and chicken broth while others add tomatoes to that. You then simmer it together with some onions, garlic, and herbs and simply serve that with all the toppings!

To make creamy chicken tortilla soup, you simply take that broth and whir it in a blender or food processor until it's really smooth then serve that with the chicken and all the other delicious toppings.   

Got It. But How Do You Make Tortilla Soup Thicker?

I've seen all sorts of tricks for thickening soups throughout the years and many of them are pretty bizzare in my opinion. Blame it on me having studied at a French culinary school, but I believe that the majority of the time you should reduce a broth to thicken it instead of doing anything else.

One major exception is with chili and chicken tortilla soup where we add fine cornmeal to thicken it. I know, it seems a little strange if you haven't done it before but the result is that the soup flavor is more complex and it has a naturally, slightly thickened result. The trick is to simmer the soup with the cornmeal a bit -- ideally 10 to 20 minutes -- so that the cornmeal can swell up and absorb the liquid. 

Oh, and if you don't have cornmeal, you can add in 3 to 4 corn tortillas or a couple handfuls of crushed-up tortilla chips and get similar results. 

Finally, What Is A Good Side Dish To Serve With Tortilla Soup?

Pretty much any reason at all -- game night, Monday Night Football party, wintry weather, or you're just fighting a cold and you can't eat anymore chicken noodle soup -- is, in our book, a good reason to make chicken tortilla soup. And, of course, each of those occasions might call for a different side to serve with the soup. In general, we turn to healthy but filling salads to serve along with it like a Classic Caesar Salad, our Grilled Avocado Salad With Green Goddess Dressing, this Los Cabos Summer Salad, this Grilled Mexican Corn Panzanella if it's grilling season , or this Salt-Roasted Beet and Orange Arugula Salad With Achiote Dressing And Toasted Seeds

Ingredients

  • 4 (6 inch) corn tortillas

    cut into 1/4-inch strips

  • 3 tablespoons canola, grapeseed, or peanut oil

    divided

  • 1/2 medium yellow onion

    finely chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves

    finely chopped

  • kosher salt and Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium poblano peppers (sometimes labeled pasilla)

    ends trimmed, rib and seeds removed, and finely chopped (can use an Anaheim chile)

  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon ground oregano

    or 2 sprigs fresh oregano (or use fresh epazote if you can find it!)

  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 10 cups low sodium chicken broth

    or water

  • 1/4 cup finely ground cornmeal

    (gluten free, if desired)

  • 6 cups shredded cooked turkey or chicken

    (about 1 1/2 pounds)

  • 2 limes

    cut into wedges, for serving

  • ripe avocado

    for garnish (optional)

  • Crumbled feta or Cotija cheese

    for garnish (optional)

  • Thinly sliced radishes

    for garnish (optional)

  • Thinly sliced green onions (aka scallions)

    for garnish (optional)

Instructions

To Make Oven-Fried Tortilla Strips: Heat oven to 400°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Toss the tortilla strips with 1 tablespoon of the oil then spread out on a rimmed baking sheet. When the oven is heated, bake the tortillas strips until crisp and golden, 5 to 8 minutes, tossing halfway through. 

Tip

The tortilla strips will crisp better if they're slightly stale. You can still use fresh tortillas but they'll take longer to crisp up. The tortilla strips can be baked up to 2 days in advance. If you want to be totally classic, you can fry these but toasting them in the oven is less messy. Oh, and you can totally use tortilla chips (like we did in the photo) instead of tortilla strips but we really like the little thin strips of corn tortilla in the soup!

For The Tortilla Soup Broth: Meanwhile, heat the remaing 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium-high. When it shimmers, add the onion, season with salt and pepper, and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and chile and cook until just softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and oregano (or epazote) and cook until just fragrant. Stir in the broth, the tomatoes and their liquid, and 8 cups of broth or water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered until broth slightly thickens and flavors meld, at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour. 

If using the cornemal, whick it in then let the broth simmer at least 15 minutes more, or until the cornmeal swells slightly and is not longer grainy in texture. You can stop now and serve the soup brothy but we prefer it smooth and blended. To do so, carefully transfer the soup to a food processor or blender  (you'll have to do it in batches in a regular blender) then blend it for a few minutes so it is really smooth and then proceed. Season well with salt and pepper then taste. Add more salt or lime juice if you want it to be "brighter" in flavor. 

To Serve The Tortilla Soup: To serve the soup, divide turkey or chicken, avocado, and cheese among six bowls; spoon in a few ladles of the broth then top with radishes, scallions, lime wedges, and tortilla strips. 

Tip

The soup base can be made up to 5 days in advance; just reheat then garnish and serve.

Footnotes

https://saltandwind.com/recipes/134-turkey-tortilla-soup-recipe

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