Friday, December 4, 2009

It's a very hearty soup

Batman and the girls aren't big soup eaters, so I don't make it very often. But today Houston had it's first snow day of the year (of the past five years, actually) and I figured soup would be a perfect dinner for such a gray and snowy day.

I've had this recipe for a while but had never made it before. I made a few changes (don't I always? that's why my baked goods never turn out) and it was fantastic--Special had thirds, and I don't think that has EVER happened for any meal. If you try it, let me know what you think.

Mexican Holiday Soup

1 cup minced onion
2 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp chili powder
3-4 cloves fresh garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 can diced tomatoes
2-3 cups cooked, shredded chicken*

*I used boneless, skinless thighs that I'd seasoned with salt, pepper and a little Cajun seasoning while cooking.

Saute the onion in oil until tender; add chili powder and garlic. Add remaining soup ingredients and simmer for 20-30 minutes.

2/3 cup masa harina or cornmeal (I used the masa harina; it's much finer than cornmeal)
1/4 tsp salt
6 Tbsp hot water
2 tsp oil
1 tsp lime juice

Combine dumpling ingredients; dough will be soft and slightly dry. Roll 1 tsp into a ball--mash it a little with your hands so it sticks together--and add to soup. Repeat with remaining dough. This sounded time-consuming, but it only took two or three minutes.

Simmer for 3 - 5 minutes, until dumplings float. Add a little lime juice to the soup and serve as-is or with a little cheese on top, and maybe some fresh cilantro if you like cilantro, which I do NOT.

The original recipe called for a can of drained garbanzo beans instead of chicken, and half as many dumplings. We don't like garbanzo beans, and we all wanted more dumplings, so I doubled the measurements here.