Tag Archives: soup

Wait, I have a blog?

Hi readers. Yes it’s true. I am actually suppose to contribute to this blog, and it has been over a month since my last post. Shame. Starring Michael Fassbender. A lot has happened over the last couple of weeks. I tried Burmese food, Jersey Mike’s and Bobby’s Burger Palace for the first time. I organized a holiday sweets exchange at the office. Four couples I know got engaged, and I accepted the role of groomsman. I ran more than 1 mile straight for the first time on my own free will since high school. I got my wisdom teeth pulled out. I poured boiling hot pasta water on my right index and middle fingers. I found out I would be moving onto a new client early this year. I made lemon chess pie, lobster rolls and rack of lamb for the first time. And lastly, I went to a tasting of new menu items at a friend’s restaurant.


Mint Chocolate Chunk Cookies


Catfish Soup from Yoma


Coconut Chicken Soup


New Years Eve Hot Pot at my Sister’s


Hot Pot Protein Spread


Omni Parker House Boston Cream Pie


Homemade Lobster Rolls


Rack of Lamb with Pale Dinner Roll (from scratch) and Steamed Green Beans


Pan Seared Scallops with a White Wine Sauce and Penne with Pepperjack Cream Sauce

Food wise I still find myself day dreaming about dropping everything and going to culinary school or start planning a restaurant/food venture and getting in way over my head. I took a look at my post with last year’s food resolutions and got somewhat depressed about things I didn’t get to accomplish. So with that, here are food resolutions for 2012.

1. Make noodles and pasta from scratch (rolled over from 2011)
2. Make dumplings and spring rolls from scratch
3. Make Buttermilk Fried Chicken from Ad Hoc at Home (also rolled over from 2011)
4. New ethnic food to try: Russian
5. Meat to try: alligator
6. Fruit to try: durian
7. Dish to eat that I surprisingly never had: eggs benedict
8. Dish to make: souffle
9. Restaurants to try: Neptune Oyster, B&G Oysters
10. Additional skills to learn: properly eating a crab, scaling and breaking down a whole fish, making legit bbq ribs on a charcoal grill

What are your food resolutions for 2012?

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tortilla soup

Sometimes blogging about food means subjecting yourself and those you love to just plain ridiculousness and tom foolery. For instance, if I am planning on making something fancy and French for the blog, I’ll go shopping on Thursday or Friday so that on Saturday morning, I can have my mise en place ready to go by noon… usually for a recipe I’m going to be eating for dinner. Yes, I am a masochist and like cooking things that take me literally ALL DAY. My reason is the lighting in my apartment. It’s not ideal and I am a firm believer in natural lighting over artificial lighting when it comes to food. It just makes everything seem warm and sunny and of course makes the food overall more appealing.  My job makes it impossible to take pictures of anything in daylight during the week, so again, my Saturday is my day in the sun… literally.

Blogging about food also means having to struggle through the neverending battle of the bulge. Fortunately, my boyfriend has equipped me with p90x videos. I’m whipping up buttercream one minute and then doing plyometrics 15 minutes later.  Crazy, but I am doing p90x afterall.  That must mean I’m EXTREME!  I was talking with a fellow blogger, Winston from The Gluttonous JD, who shares my fear of fatness.  Winston mentioned something about a diet, at which point I stopped paying attention.  I don’t diet.  I may indulge in smaller portions, but I do not and will not ever go cold turkey on certain food items.  He caught my attention again when he mentioned Rick Bayless and soup that was “healthy”.  In my mind, Rick Bayless + Soup + Easy Dinner = Tortilla Soup!  I’m not sure how healthy this is, but I can guarantee it’s better than eating a cupcake or two.

Ingredients

  • 4 skinless bone in chicken thighs
  • 1 can of reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 jalepeno pepper, diced
  • salt to taste

The Fixings!

  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges
  • 4 scallions
  • 1/4 cup of cilantro leaves
  • Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • Canola oil

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  This will be for your homemade tortilla strips.

While the oven is preheating, add the chicken thighs, jalepeno (add the seeds if you want it extra spicy), broth and chicken stock to a large pot.  Turn the heat to medium-high and wait for the pot to come to a boil.  Once it reaches its boiling point, redice the heat to medium-low and let simmer for 15 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

At this point, remove the chicken from the pot and set aside.  You want it cool enough to handle when you go to shred it.  In the meantime, add salt to the cooking liquid.  Depending on your brand and how “low sodium” it really is, you will need to adjust the amount of salt you add.  Slowly build up the amount of salt you add to the pot.  Cliche, but it’s a good tip — you can always add but you can’t take it back.  Keep tasting until the salt level is right for you.

To make the tortilla strips, brush the tortillas with the canola oil on both sides.  Stack the tortillas and cut the rounds right down the middle.  Stack the semi-circles and cut into strips about 1/2 inch wide.  Spread the strips on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt.  Bake for 10 minutes, then stir the strips around to make sure everyone is started to get a nice tan.  Periodically check your strips for golden brown perfection.  For me, it took another 7 minutes.  Really watch these though.  I went 3 minutes too long on my first batch and they very quickly went from golden brown to dark tropical tan.  Yuck.

Your chicken should be cool and ready for shredding.  If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, take the thighs and start shredding with your fingers.  Throw the chicken into the pot and let it come back up in temperature.

To serve, you can be like me and dirty every single small bowl in your kitchen and fill them with the fun verdant toppings.  Let your guests add what they’d like and enjoy!

Overall, I really didn’t think I would like this soup.  In the pot, it was bland and “chickeny”.  Chicken isn’t a bad flavor, it was just a little one note and not the complex broth flavor I was looking for.  HOWEVER, once I added all of the garnishes and a squeeze of lime, I was immediately transported to flavor town.  This was refreshing and light.  I would even be so bold to say it may have been healthy!  Shocking, I know!!!!  If you have the ingredients, I’d say give this soup a chance.