Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Pumpkin Tortilla Soup (tortilla's optoinal)

Pumpkin Tortilla Soup

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium white onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup finely chopped cilantro, plus more sprigs for garnish
1 tablespoon ground cumin
Chile pequins, other dried hot peppers, or cayenne pepper to taste*
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
5 cups unsalted chicken stock (homemade is best)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-3 cups cooked chicken
Optional:
6 corn tortillas
Vegetable oil for deep-frying (I just use corn chips)
1-2 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted, and cubed

Heat 4 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion, garlic, cilantro, and , stirring frequently, until onion is soft.
Add cumin and crushed peppers or cayenne and sauté for another minute.
Add pumpkin, tomatoes, vegetable stock, and salt and stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for one hour. (or even better for 4+ hours in crock pot)
(or make life easier by using premade tortilla chips... although this does taste better)
While the soup is simmering, cut the  6 tortillas in half and then into 1/4-inch-wide strips. Heat 1/2 inch of vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until very hot but not smoking. Fry tortilla strips in two batches until crisp and light golden (about a minute). Using a slotted spoon, transfer tortilla strips to towels to drain.
To serve, ladle soup into bowls and garnish with tortilla strips, avocado, and cilantro.

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