Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Enchilada Soup

The time has come for me to incorporate more vegetables in to my diet. Don't get me wrong, it isn't some sort of weird torture experiment.  I actually really enjoy eating vegetables but I've gotten into a vegetable rut lately.  I pick up my standard veggies at the grocery store each week, bring them home and prepare them exactly the same way. I don't put a lot of thought into our vegetable side dishes so we end up eating the same old, boring vegetable sides that are quick and easy to prepare.

This is where you come in.  I need you to send me your veggie recipes.  I'm sure that there are tons of ways for me to incorporate more vegetables into my diet that I haven't even considered.  Right now, I'm in soup mode so I've been loading up bowls of hot soup with all kinds of veggies lately.  I pretty much like any kind of vegetable in soup - spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, squash, carrots, peas, corn, celery, kale.  If you've got a great vegetable recipe for me to try - send it to me.  I'd love to see it. 

This recipe for Enchilada Soup came from  It is super healthy UNTIL you add the cream at the end.  I left the cream out of my bowl of soup but you can decide for yourself.

Enchilada Soup
1/2 large yellow onion
1 tbs veggie oil
2 chicken breasts
5-6 cups of water
1 whole bay leaf
3 large tomatoes (skin peeled off)
1 tbs vegetable oil
1/2 large yellow onion (from above, in stock)
2 shredded chicken breasts (from above)
2 1/2 cups of stock (from above)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (you can adjust to taste)
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tsp minced fresh cilantro

In a large pot, preheat the vegetable oil and add sliced onions. Saute for a couple of minutes, until fragrant. Add water and chicken breasts. Bring to boil and add the bay leaf and salt. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook the stock for about 1 1/2 hours. (White foam-like substance will appear at the top, in the beginning, just take it off with a spoon and discard.)
Take out the chicken breast, shred it using two forks and set aside. Pour the stock into a separate container and set aside for a minute. Discard the bay leaf.

(Couple of easy ways to peel the tomatoes: 1-you can make a criss-cross cut on top of tomatoes and drop them into boiling water for just a couple of minutes and the skin will be easy to peel off. 2 - you can just use a potato peeler of the tomatoes are firm enough.)

Add them to the pot with 1 T. oil. Salt the tomatoes a little, so they give out juice faster. Saute for a couple of minutes.

Add the shredded chicken.

Add the 2 1/2 cups of stock and the onions to the pot and stir well.

Add red pepper flakes and cumin. Taste to see if you need to add more salt. Cook on medium heat for about 15 minutes.

Add the heavy cream and freshly minced cilantro. Cook for a couple more minutes and serve.

Top off with fresh cilantro and shredded cheese before serving.

The fat from the chicken stock separated from the cream which made kind of a weird ring around the bowl.  


I'm going to let you in on a little secret --- I usually scoop out my bowl of soup before I add the cream to the pot.  My own very small way of cutting extra calories out of my dinner.

To be perfectly honest, I tasted the soup both ways and I actually preferred the non-cream version.  It was really tasty and didn't need anything to thicken in - in my humble opinion. My suggestion would be to make a batch for yourself but be sure and taste it before the final step of stirring in cream.  You might just agree that it's perfectly fine soup without it.


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