Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup

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Cold, cold day today, and I spent several hours outside at the barn this afternoon. Soup was definitely a good choice to help me warm up when I got home.

Ingredients

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 tbsp Tastefully Simple Wahoo! chili seasoning
1 jalapeno
1 medium onion
3 cloves garlic
1 chipotle pepper in adobo + about 2tsp of the sauce
28oz can diced tomatoes
3 cups frozen corn
2 tbsp butter
¼ cup masa harina
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
Monterey jack cheese
Tortilla strips (store bought or homemade)
Salt

Instructions

Dice onion and jalapeño (after removing seeds). Mince garlic. Rough chop chili. Don’t worry too much about having perfect knife skills because you’re just going to puree it all later.

Boil chicken breasts in a medium pot. Salt the water! Set the chicken aside when finished.

Melt butter in a dutch oven (or other large pot) over medium heat. Cook onions, jalapeño, garlic, & chipotle+sauce until the onions are translucent.

Add tomatoes and chili seasoning. Cook for a few minutes, then add chicken stock.

Use an immersion blender to puree everything in the pot. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a regular blender. Just be careful because hot/steamy stuff + blenders aren’t always a good combo.

Add the masa harina. Use the immersion blender to get rid of any chunks that form. This is a good time to taste it and add salt. Don’t worry if you think it’s too spicy right now. The cream will take care of that later. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.

Add the corn. (Get the tortilla strips in the oven now if you’re making them)

Pull or shred the chicken. I use the stand mixer for this. Toss the chicken in and use the beater on speed 2 for about 30-45 seconds. I always cover it with a towel because sometimes pieces like to fly out. You can also pull it with a fork instead.

Add the chicken to the soup. Stir in the heavy cream. Taste again, and add more salt if needed. Let it cook on low for about 10 more minutes.

Serve and garnish with the cheese and tortilla strips.

Tortilla Strips

Use a pizza cutter to cut tortillas into strips. I cut small tortillas into quarters, then cut into strips. You have two options – fry until golden, or bake. I baked these since they were going in soup. Coat in olive oil, season with salt. Line up the strips on a baking sheet and bake on 350 until golden.

Chicken & Apple Curry Soup

chicken-apple-curry-soupOur grocery store sometimes has this curry soup with chicken and apples in the hot food section, but not often enough. My wife checks for it every time we’re there, and they rarely have it. Naturally, this meant I had to try to replicate it.

Note on the size of the apples – I cut them too big. You definitely want a small to medium dice, about half or a quarter of the size in the photo above.

Ingredients 

  • 3 boneless chicken breasts
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 small onion
  • 1-2 apples
  • ⅓ cup golden seedless raisins 
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • ¾ cup coconut milk
  • 2 ½ tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp yellow curry powder 
  • 1 tsp garam masala 
  • ½ tsp cumin 
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • Olive oil

Instructions

Make a roux with the 3 tbsp butter and 3 tbsp flour. Melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour. Keep whisking while it cooks util it’s a dark blond color. Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature. Continue to the rest of the steps while the roux is cooling.

Put chicken breasts in oven to bake.

Dice carrots and onion (small dice), set aside together. Peel, core, and cut apples into a small to medium dice. Set apples aside. You should have about 1 cup of apples once cut.  It’s ok if you have more, just don’t use more than 2 cups.

Whenever chicken is done, pull/shred it and set it aside.

Add a small amount of olive oil to a dutch oven (or large pot). Sautee the carrots & onions until the onions begin to become translucent. Add the curry powder, garam masala, cumin, & salt. Stir and let cook for a couple of more minutes. Add the chicken stock. Bring to boil, reduce.

Optional: puree using immersion blender.

Hopefully the roux is now room temperature. If it is, add it into the soup, whisking constantly until it’s pretty well incorporated. If it’s not to room temperature yet, just keep the soup on low until the roux reaches room temperature.

Warm the coconut milk and add while continuing to whisk.

Add chicken, apples, and raisins. Bring to boil again, reduce to simmer, and let it simmer covered for a couple of hours. I only stirred it twice while simmering just to make sure my roux dissolved fully and wasn’t all clumping on the bottom. Letting it simmer is important. It didn’t taste right until after it simmered for a while.

Buffalo Chicken Crescent Spirals

buffalo-chx-spiralsI needed to make dinner one night, and I’d forgotten to take anything out. Oops. Strangely, I had buffalo chicken dip left over from a party. (This was strange because my buffalo chicken dip usually gets scarfed and I end up wishing I’d made more.) Anyway, back to the dinner thing. I always keep a stockpile of crescents in my fridge. Right now I think we have three cans. I rarely use them for actual crescent rolls, but I’m always using them for other stuff. I like to lob the end off of the can with a chef’s knife like I saw some chef on Food Network do in one of those mystery basket challenges on Chopped or something like that. Too bad I can’t remember who or what show. Anyway, dinner! I used crescent rounds to make these. You could use crescent rolls, you’d just have to make the dough into a rectangle, then cut into strips.

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 Ranch packet
  • Buffalo sauce 
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 package crescent rounds

Instructions 

Bake the chicken breasts until fully cooked. Pull or shred the meat. (Personally I use my KitchenAid stand mixer to shred chicken. I’ll do a post on it at some point, but Google will show you for now.) Add cream cheese, ranch packet, 1 handful of cheddar cheese, and about 1/4ish maybe 1/3 cup of buffalo sauce.

So now you have a buffalo chicken dip recipe too. If you’re using it for dip, top with cheddar and bake until hot and cheese is melted. Obviously skip this step if you’re making the crescent spirals.

Roll out the strips of crescent dough. Press so they get a little wider. Spread mix down the strip and roll each strip into a spiral. Press the crescent together at the end if needed to keep it together.

Place on a baking sheet and bake at 350° until golden.