Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tortilla Soup

I know everyone says "it's that time of the year again" to make soup because it's fall, but the truth of the matter is I love soup all year round. Yes, even on hot summer days, I will eat homemade soup.  Yes, my family thinks I'm nuts, but what can you do. I love making soup and I love eating soup. I make tons of soup and freeze it. 
Now my friend Deccy (check him out, he's a gorgeous greyhound) from across the pond says his Momma's love spicy soup.  So I thought I'd post my tortilla soup recipe for them. I really think they'd enjoy it. You can't go wrong in my eyes with chipotle peppers, jalapenos and cilantro.  So if you like spicy, here's my recipe for tortilla soup which I think I adapted from a Cooking Light magazine, but I can't remember since it's on a scrap piece of paper! lol!

Tortilla Soup

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast
8 cups of low sodium chicken broth
1 large onion, peeled and quartered
4 cloves of garlic, peeled
8-10 sprigs fresh cilantro or 8 frozen cilantro toppit cubes
1 sprig fresh oregano or 1 tsp. dried oregano
pinch of salt
1 14oz. can of diced tomatoes
1/2 a medium jalapeno pepper seeded and cut into chunks
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce with 1 tbsp. adobo sauce
1 tbsp. vegetable oil

Bring chicken broth, 2 onion quarters, 2 garlic cloves, cilantro, oregano and salt to a boil.  Reduce heat to low. 

Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until the chicken breasts are done.

Remove chicken and set aside to cool.

Strain the broth through some cheesecloth and set aside.

In a blender, puree tomatoes, 2 onion quarters, 2 garlic cloves, jalapeno, chipotle pepper and adobo sauce until smooth.

Heat oil in large pot, add the puree and a pinch of salt.  Cook until dark, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, shred your cooled chicken. (I just use two forks)

Try to ignore the drooling hound at your feet.

Add strained broth to simmered puree mixture.

Give the hound at your feet some chicken to stop the drool until you have finished your soup.

Add the shredded chicken to the soup and heat through.  Crumble some tortilla chips on top.


Thursday, October 4, 2012

My Mom's Baked Rice Pudding

Our family loves having rice pudding for dessert.  It's nice and light, not too sweet and so simple to make. I always make extra rice when we have it for dinner so I can make this dessert. The only kind of rice pudding I have ever made is baked in the oven because that's the way my Mother and Grandmother did it. Hey, why mess with a good thing.  So hear is my Mother's recipe for Baked Rice Pudding.

Baked Rice Pudding
(printable version)

2 cups of hot cooked rice (I use Uncle Ben's but minute rice is fine)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
3 eggs, slightly beaten
2 1/2 cups of milk, scalded (which means steamy hot but not boiling.  I find two minutes in the microwave works perfect)
1/2 cup raisins in cinnamon (I just sprinkle some cinnamon into my measuring cup of raisins and give it a shake)

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Blend eggs, sugar, vanilla and salt in a medium bowl.

Gradually stir in the milk (not too fast or you'll cook the eggs!)

Add the raisins in cinnamon.

Then add your hot cooked rice.

Pour into an ungreased 1 1/2 quart casserole and sprinkle with cinnamon.  Place your dish inside a slightly bigger pan.

Then pour very hot water into the pan about 1 1/2 inches deep. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 70 minutes.

You won't be sorry you made this one!  I serve it warm with a bit of milk over it.