posts may contain Amazon affiliate links, which earn me a small commission when you buy (but doesn't cost you anything extra). Occasionally I receive free products and/or run sponsored posts—this will always be stated clearly in the post. Thank you for supporting this blog.

This website contains some quotations, excerpts, and screen clips from copyrighted material. These uses fall well within the copyright doctrine of "Fair Use".
Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tortilla Soup, take 2. AAAAAAAAnd Action!

I have a favorite Tortilla Soup recipe.  I have never strayed from that recipe.  Until now.  You favorite Tortilla Soup recipe is the freakin' bomb.  Period.  Exclamation mark!  Of course I've eaten tortilla soup elsewhere, from different recipes...but nothing compares.  I know, I know, people's tastes vary as much as the people themselves.  But that's me.  It was actually my 11th post. Ever!  And do I even need to say it is a Rick Bayless recipe?  Didn't think so.  So, for my favorite Tortilla Soup recipe click HERE...but only if you're willing to overlook the "beginner"-ness of the post.  The pictures, the formatting, the newness of it all...remember, 11th post ever!!

But, on to the reason for me finally breaking down and making a different Tortilla Soup recipe.  There are two culprits.  IHCC and Mark Bittman.  And they go hand in hand.  You probably know we're currently cooking the recipes of Bittman over at IHCC and our theme this week is Movie Night! Guess which movie I watched?  Tortilla Soup.  Ha!   It's one of those wonderful foodie movies I adore so much.  A Latino family where the father is a retired chef and has always cooked weekly meals for his daughters.  It's a story of food, family, love and their connections...and there are in our everyday lives.  If you've seen Eat, Drink, Man, Woman or Soul Food...and enjoyed'll enjoy this one, too.  And if you haven't...go rent all three and have a foodie fun movie night!! 
Tortilla Soup
from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian
yield: 4 svgs.

1/2 c. peanut or neutral oil
6 corn tortillas (stale are fine), cut into 1/2-inch strips
2 fresh chiles, preferably poblano, or 2 dried ancho chiles  I used anchos
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1 large onion, sliced
1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, or one 28-oz. can whole tomatoes  I used canned
freshly ground black pepper
pinch dried oregano or epazote  I used oregano
1 quart water or vegetable stock
1 lime, cut into wedges
1 c. fresh cilantro leaves, chopped for garnish (optional)
1 c. queso fresco, cubed for garnish (optional)  Used this
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced for garnish (optional)  Used this
1 or 2 radishes, thinly sliced for garnish (optional)
1/2 carrot, grated on the biggest holes of a box grater for garnish (optional)

Okay, I'm gonna give you the instructions for the version I made, using anchos & canned get the instructions for the poblanos & fresh tomatoes, see the book...
1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.  When oil is hot (about 350 degrees F), begin to fry the tortilla strips in batches until golden brown and crisp, turning after a minute or two, for a total of 2-4 minutes.  Drain on paper towels, season each batch with a pinch of salt, and set aside.  I didn't season them, just waited to season the soup.  Do in batches if necessary.  Fry ancho chiles for ~30 seconds each.  Set aside.

2. Discard all but 2 Tbs. of the oil.  Turn heat to medium and cook garlic and onion, stirring occasionally, until golden and softened, about 10 minutes.

3.  Add the tomatoes and chiles to the pan with the onion and garlic and crush the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon.  Season w/ salt, pepper and a pinch of oregano;  add the water and adjust the heat so the mixture simmers gently.  Cook for 20-30 minutes, crushing the tomatoes from time to time.

4.  Cool slightly and using an immersion blender or upright blender, purée until smooth.  Return to stove over medium, stir in the fried tortillas, and simmer for another 3-5 minutes.  Season to taste with lime juice, salt and pepper.  Garnish w/ any or all of suggested garnishes.

It was good.  It was really good.  I'm woman enough to admit it.  But, I'm not gonna go so far as to say it was better than my favorite.  But I would make it again.  And eat it.  With a smile on my face.  Head on over to IHCC to see what everybody else came up with on this Movie Night! theme!  I'm also submitting this to Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for Souper Sundays!!

Would you like to comment?

  1. An absloutely lovely hearty soup, am loving all these Mark B recipes at IHCC, they are gorgeous and specially deliciously so..

  2. It's been way too long since I've had tortilla soup! It looks full with flavor. And, by the sounds of it, it seems I need to have a foodie movie night. I haven't seen any of the movies you mentioned.

  3. Definitly have to check out that movie. The soup looks great, but I have no doubt that your original is beeter :)

  4. Love tortilla soups - do not have a "go-to" one - just try them all and bask in their sun. Need to rent the movie! And have some soup.

  5. On a sunless day like today this soup would bring a ray of hope into the kitchen.

  6. Yum! I love tortilla soup and yours looks delicious! In fact, your photos are making me hungry! :)

  7. Your soup looks delicious! I wish we could have made them and watched the movie together too! ;-) The Bittman recipes look pretty close--we could have had taste tests.

    Just goes to show how brilliant we both are that we made the same movie night treat lol!

    Thanks for sending it to Souper Sundays!

  8. I have seen countless recipes for this soup. Yet, I have never prepared it! This recipe I am putting on my list. It looks scrumptious and very comforting.

    Smile Bunches!

  9. Lovely soup! And now I gotta look for the DVD of Tortilla Soup!

  10. Never heard of this movie, but now I'm going to see if my local library has it.
    Then I'm going to make soup to go with it, of course!

  11. great version of tortilla soup...looks super yummy


  12. Ugh I haven't watched ANY of these! What have I been doing with my life?!?!? The soup looks fantastic. I'm going to have to try this AND your favorite. And get back to you.

  13. I've had tortilla soup, and it is time to start making it. This looks like a terrific recipe!

  14. Excellent choice. I haven't had tortilla soup in such a long time.

  15. Yikes, now you have gone and given me a craving for this- hmmm, do I have the fixin's for it?

    Yours reminds me of a chef friend in Dallas, Stephen Piles, he makes it almost exactly the same and your right its the BOMB!

    I went down south yesterday to work at a winery, and ate me some Tex-mex, and I was in heaven, for some reason they are all down there, not near me :( If you lived near me I would be in heaven!

  16. Tortilla Soup is one of my favorite movies, food related or not. I've yet to find my favorite Tortilla Soup recipe. I can't believe I'm going to say this, but the Rick Bayless (my hero) recipe I tried was underwhelming. Was your recipe post from Mexican Everyday? Maybe I misread the recipe?

  17. I've never had tortilla soup. ever. I feel so cal. I mean the stuff is everywhere. omg..if I'm not a so cal gal...whoooooo am I?!! ( in the middle of an identity crisis here).
    the soup sounds wonderful. I need to watch that movie! and I love your 11th post!! (and so happy i'm not the only one with "beginners pictures"). Isn't it fun to see how much we've grown? :)

  18. I haven't had tortilla soup in a long time but it is delicious. And I think both of your versions loog great to me!

  19. Joanne...YES! Do it ;)

    E...there's a few houses for sale on my street 8)!, it was from Mexico One Plate at a Time. They're probably a bit different because he usually changes 'em up a bit in diff. book, but I'll check later (too lazy right now). I'll make that one too and see how they compare. My fave is just the perfect balance of PERFECT!! We eat it until we can't eat it anymore...and honestly, it's all about the stuff you add in to the flavor-packed broth once it cooks. It's a combination, I think :D

    Dani...Yes! So fun to look back and get a good chuckle...that way we do appreciate it :) And yeah, lil' miss so. cal!! (did I ever tell you I was born in so. cal? So. cal girl at heart).