Tag Archives: soup

Chayote Soup | Sopa de Chayote

sopa de chayote

As an adolescent I was always intrigued by chayotes – the mysterious fruits that dangled from vines in my great grandmother’s backyard. When I began experimenting with recipes and new ingredients, I first thought to use the chayote as a substitute in my interpretation of butternut squash soup. The outcome…amazing, if I do say so myself!

Chayotes are technically fruits, but act much like vegetables in that they are only mildly sweet and somewhat bland. They reach their full flavor potential when sautéed with olive oil, butter, onion and garlic. Next time you’re walking through the produce aisle at your local market, give them a try! You can always start with my chayote soup recipe below. 

chayotes

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Tortilla Soup | Sopa de Tortilla

tortilla-soup-sopa-azteca

Last week, I went to visit my mother and it just so happened that she was in the mood for a good bowl of tortilla soup. Typically, I crave tortilla soup from Puerto Nuevo, an area of Baja known for its lobster. There, the broth is light, simple, and delicious. It differs from the versions I have tried here in the US, which are much thicker in consistency and can be served as a main course.

During a cooking class in Oaxaca with Chef Susana Trilling of Seasons of My Heart, I had the good fortune to reencounter the tortilla soup prepared “estilo Puerto Nuevo” that I daydream about ever since I first tasted it in Baja.  I enlisted my team of sous chefs (otherwise known as my mom and sisters) and embarked upon the journey back to Baja, to bring the taste of the light, yet tasty tortilla soup to the palates of my friends and family.  Needless to say, all of our taste buds agreed that the experience was nothing short of a dream come true! Read below for complete recipe.

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Homemade Chicken Broth

Recipe by Lola

Ingredients:
1 whole chicken in pieces
2 celery stalks with leaves
1 carrot peeled and halved
1 onion peeled and halved
5 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon peppercorns (or ground pepper)
Water (enough to cover chicken)
Salt (to taste)

Preparation:

  1. Add chicken, celery, carrot, onion, garlic, peppercorns, and salt to a large stock pot.
  2. Add enough water to cover ingredients with an additional 2 inches of water.
  3. Bring water to a boil over high heat for ten minutes. Add salt and mix well.
  4. Adjust to low-medium heat, and simmer for 30 to 45 minutes or until chicken is well cooked.
  5. Remove chicken and strain ingredients through a fine-mesh sieve. Reserve chicken for another recipe.
  6. Store and refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Note: I like to measure my broth out, 2 cups at a time and store in heavy-duty freezer bags. Broth can be frozen for up to 3 months. When ready to use, simply remove from freezer and thaw.

Squash Blossom Soup | Sopa de Flor de Calabaza

by Pilar Cabrera

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon onion diced
1 cup raw corn kernels (frozen corn may be substituted if necessary)
2 cups round or green zucchini squash cubed into 1x1x1-inch pieces
4 cups fresh squash blossoms cleaned and stems removed
4 cups chicken broth
Salt (to taste)
Black pepper (to taste)
Oaxaca or string cheese for garnish
Mexican cream (table cream or crème fraîche may be substituted if necessary) for garnish

Preparation:

  1. Saute onion in butter until translucent on medium flame.
  2. Add corn and squash and cook over medium flame for 3 minutes. Add the blossoms, reserving 6 for garnish. Stir and cook until corn and zucchini become tender.
  3. Transfer and blend on high setting with chicken broth for 60 seconds or until pureed.
  4. Return mixture to pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Allow to cook for an additional 7 minutes. Remove from heat.
  5. Strain mixture through a fine-meshed sieve to remove corn fibers.
  6. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Pour into bowls and garnish with one blossom, thin strings of cheese, and cream. Serve hot.

Menudo | Mexican Soup with Beef Tripe

by Ignacio (Nash) Mancillas (my uncle)

Ingredients:
8 pounds beef tripe cut into 2×2-inch pieces
1 beef foot
½ white onion
3 cloves garlic
3 bay leaves
Salt (to taste)
1 19-ounce (large) can red chile sauce for enchiladas
2 29-ounce (large) cans white hominy w/juice

Preparation:

  1. Fill large pot halfway with water and bring to a boil with tripe, beef foot, onion, garlic, bay leaves, and salt. Cook on medium-high flame for approximately 1½ to 2 hours and skim the fat continuously as needed.
  2. Add 2 cans of hominy w/juice and 1 can chile.
  3. Lower flame to medium and boil for 1 more hour. Continue to skim fat as needed. Entire process takes about 3 to 3 ½ hours. Test meat – it should be soft, but not too soft and not rubbery.