RECIPE

Chicken Tortilla Soup with Chipotle and Fire-Roasted Tomato

The smokehouse flavor of the cheese and bacon really make this soup something special, and the chipotles give it a definite kick!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • 1 bay leaf, fresh if available
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 4 slices thick, smoky, center-cut bacon, chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 chipotles in adobo, chopped, plus 2 tablespoons sauce
  • 1 can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes (EVOO)
  • Salt
  • 4 cups lightly crushed corn tortilla chips
  • 2 cups shredded fresh smoked mozzarella or smoked sharp white cheddar (about 3/4 pound)
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • Freshly chopped cilantro leaves, for garnish

Preparation

Bring broth to a simmer and add chicken tenders; poach 6-7 minutes with a bay leaf.

While chicken poaches, heat EVOO in a medium soup pot or deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until crisp, then remove with slotted spoon. Drain off excess fat, leaving 2-3 tablespoons in the pan. Add onions and garlic to the skillet and cook five minutes; stir in chipotles and tomatoes.

Remove chicken from stock, dice and then add to soup. Pass stock through a strainer, then add to the soup.

Place a pile of crushed tortilla chips in the bottom of each soup bowl. Cover liberally with smoked cheese, then ladle the hot soup down over the top. Serve with lime, raw onions and cilantro at table to finish the soup.

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Rachael Ray