I’m having an affair.
With my slow cooker.
It started out as a fling. An cheese dip here. A pot of chili there. But it quickly escalated into a full-fledged relationship. We were soon making pot roasts together. Cuban pork. Dinners good enough for (gasp!) entertaining.
My husband eventually found out.
He’s okay with it.
If you too are having a relationship with a kitchen appliance, then follow my lead and make this tasty, ridiculously easy tortilla soup.
I won’t tell.
Start with some chicken. Light or dark meat–just make it about 2 pounds worth, boneless, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1″ pieces, please.
Then grab some cilantro. Washed and dried. About 1 cup with stems removed, plus a few sprigs more for garnish.
Rummage through your pantry, or Hispanic food aisle, and find one can of green chilies.
Canned green chilies are probably called blasphemy in Santa Fe. But on my turf, I call them awesome.
Also grab one can cream of mushroom soup (it’ll keep the soup a bit creamy)…
…one can of red enchilada sauce…
…and one can of whole stewed tomatoes.
Also grab one yellow (or sweet) onion…
…and half a head of garlic.
Find yourself about a cup and a half of chicken stock. I cheat and make mine from bullion cubes. Because I’m lazy.
Finally, for spice, you’ll need one bay leaf and about a teaspoon each of cumin and cayenne.
Oh, and corn. One cup (or as much as you’d like) frozen or canned or fresh or freezer-burned.
Also have some tortillas on hand for later.
Throw the chicken in your slow cooker and season well with salt and pepper.
Pour in all the canned stuff, chicken stock, and the cilantro…
…and give it a stir.
Next, chop the onion and the garlic. I never do crazy fine chopping for slow cooker meals because it’s all about the flavor that the ingredients bring to the dish—not how they’re prepared. And also because…I’m lazy. But you already knew that.
Toss in the onion, garlic and corn…
…add your spices…
…and give it a good stir. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5.
Before serving, you’ll want to make some tortilla strips. Because, really, that’s the only reason it’s called tortilla soup, and not chicken-and-a-bunch-of-other-junk soup. Brush them lightly with oil and sprinkle on a little salt.
Toast under the broiler on a baking sheet for about 2 minutes a side, or until they’re crunchy and slightly browned.
Slice into 1/2″ strips.
By now, your soup should be looking and smelling deeelicious.
Serve topped with tortilla strips, a dollop of sour cream, and some fresh cilantro. You know, if you feel like it.
Husband likes his piled high with a little sharp cheddar. Okay, a lot of sharp cheddar.
Oh, this soup warms my tummy. It’s got just enough spice and a whole lotta chicken-y, corn-y, chile-y, tomato-ey goodness.
Make this sometime this week to warm up a chilly night.
- 2 pounds chicken, boneless, chopped into 1″ pieces and seasoned with salt and pepper
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
- 1 onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 can green chilies
- 1 can whole stewed tomatoes
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 1 can red enchilada sauce
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup whole kernel corn
- 4 tortillas
- sour cream and grated cheese for topping (optional)
Combine first 13 ingredients in a slow cooker and mix well. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
Brush tortillas with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and place on a baking sheet. Set oven to broil and place tortillas under broiler for 2 minutes per side, or until slightly brown and crunchy. Chop into 1″2 slices.
Serve soup sprinkled with tortilla strips and garnish with sour cream, cilantro, and grated cheese if desired.