what to do without school or work?
well, with a sick roomate and some left over orange juice, i started off the day sleeping in and briefly leaving the confines of my room to make some mimosas. (why not?)
a bit later, i found myself walking circles around the house because i'm used to constant movement during the first 12 hours of the day so i decided that it may be a good idea to make some soup for poor ol' benny.
tortilla soup it is. and for some added protein, a fried egg on top.
1 quart (4 cups) chicken broth/stock
1 quart (4 cups) water
4 skinless chicken thighs (bone in)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium white onion, chopped
5-6 plum tomatoes, peeled and roughly chopped*
2 red jalapeno peppers** or 2 chipotle peppers
1 small yellow squash, diced
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons, tomato paste
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper
tortillas, cut into strips
bunch of cilantro, roughly chopped
grated mozzarella, as needed
eggs, as needed
*the tomatoes can be peeled easily by scoring the bottom with an X and then dropping them briefly into boiling water for 10 seconds or so and then quickly thrown into an ice bath. the peel should come right off from the bottom. roughly chop it into small chunks. this is process is called "tomato concasse" if you happen to see this on any recipes. of course, you could always buy canned diced tomatoes, but where's the fun in that?
** because i live in portland, chipotle peppers are hard to come by, so i did a faux version of it by roasting the red jalapeno peppers over the burner until they char and then throwing them in a paper bag. when you take them out, you can scrape the burned skin off with the back of your knife. i then chopped them up to about the same size of the garlic.
ok, so. salt and pepper the chicken and then throw it into a hot oiled pot. lightly brown it on both sides and then remove it, set aside. add the garlic and onion to the pan and saute for a few minutes until the onions become translucent. add the peppers and tomatoes to the pan to help deglaze or to get all the bits off the bottom. add the rest of the ingredients, including the chicken EXCEPT the squash and black beans to the pot. bring the mix to a boil and then lower the heat to a simmer. basically, this will simmer until the chicken gets super tender and just falls off the bone. (about an hour).
in the meantime, lightly oil and salt your tortilla strips and then throw them in a 375 degree oven and bake until brown and crispy. you can grate the cheese of your choice and chop some cilantro while your at it.
when the chicken is tender, remove it from the pot and shred it off the bone and then return the meat to the pot with the squash and the beans. let is simmer for another 10 minutes or until the squash is tender. season with salt and pepper. (i added quite a bit of salt.) also, make sure to dig out that bay leaf. (but then again, you can always make a game out of it and say whoever gets it, doesn't have to do dishes!)
now, for the fun part. fry your egg to your preferred doneness ( i like over medium) and then place it onto your bowl of soup. sprinkle with cilantro, then the tortilla chips and then lastly with your cheese.
dig in. literally.