RECIPE: Santa Fe Chicken Soup

This soup has become a household favorite ever since I discovered many years ago from a friend via 'Eating for Life' by Bill Phillips.  Of course, like I do, I took the original recipe and tweaked it a bit to fit my own flavor preferences.  Below you will see the Fizzy-fied version of this recipe.  Including my own tips for better flavor!

The Ingredients:
chicken, boneless and skinless
lime juice
taco seasoning
brown rice
chicken broth or soup base
minced garlic
chopped green chilies
butter and/or olive oil
cheddar cheese, shredded
sour cream

The Directions:  3 Easy Steps to amazing soup
 Easy, start creating your flavor.  In the pan you will use to cook it (important for best flavor) marinate your chicken with some lime juice and taco seasoning.  The reason I suggest the same pan is twofold.  First less dishes!  Secondly, by marinating and cooking in the same pan you don't lose any of the extra flavored juice in the transfer.  When it's all done you can also transfer over any remaining juice and seasoning with the 'scrapings' of the pan.  While that marinates, cook your brown rice according to package directions. I prefer cooking with broth in order to maximize flavor of the rice. Unless you are using quick cook this can be up to an hour cook time.  Plenty of time to marinate in amazing flavor to your chicken.  When the rice is done then cook your chicken in the marinade.  This gives the rice time to settle before moving on.  You can begin on step two while the chicken is cooking.
Now we really start building the flavor up.  The chicken, when thoroughly cooked needs to be cut to bite size pieces or shredded.  I don't really have patience for shredding by hand as you can tell by the bite size pieces in the picture.  You will also want to finely chop about half an onion (I prefer yellow).  In your soup pan but a little bit of butter and/or olive oil over medium heat.  I prefer butter but if you want to go a bit healthier then do olive or a mixture.  To that add the chopped onion.  Cook until the onion is turning translucent.  Add about a tablespoon (or so, depending on preference) or minced garlic.  Please splurge and mince your own or cheat like I do with the real minced garlic, not garlic powder. Mix and cook until the onion is completely translucent.  Add the chopped green chilies.  Stir.  Add the rice that you cooked earlier.  Stir.  Add your shredded/cut chicken.  Stir.  Add enough chicken broth to more than cover everything.  I like to add cilantro at this step as well to really cook in that flavor.  Fresh is best but dried is just as amazing in a pinch.  Let simmer until the flavors are completed blended.  The longer you simmer the richer the flavor.  Soup Basics 101.
Step 3: Garnish and Enjoy!  Top each bowl with some fresh cilantro leaves, shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream.  Yes I know it takes the healthy down a notch but amps the flavor up a couple.  Do yourself the flavor and garnish!

Like any soup the next day rule applies.  I don't know what it is about making soup, refrigerating it and reheating.  Soup the second day is always better than the first.  But don't wait.  It's amazing right from the pan as well!

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