Friday, February 8, 2013

Mexicali Chicken and Vegetable Soup

I've made lots of chicken soup. Chicken and Rice, Chicken Noodle, Chicken and Vegetables, Italian-Style Chicken Soup and others.  So then I thought, why not Mexicali type Chicken and Vegetable Soup?  You know, a good chicken stock base, with some Mexican spices such as Chili Powder added?  I know I'm not the first to try this, and definitely won't be the last, but I set out on that adventure not sure exactly what I'd come up with, anticipating the end result would be good ... or at least that was my hope.  I was not disappointed!

Homemade Chicken Stock (you can also use leftover chicken pieces (thighs, legs, wings) from a roast chicken to make the stock) You'll need about 2 quarts
2 cups reserved, cooked chicken meat from stock (or 2 cups cooked and chopped chicken meat)
1-2 tbls. chili powder (to taste)
2 tsp. course-ground black pepper (to taste)
2 tsp. sea salt
1 - 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (undrained)
2 cups frozen cubed potatoes (or fresh Red or Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cubed)
1 cup frozen niblet corn
1 cup frozen green beans
4-6 Jalapeno pepper slices (if desired)
Options:  add black beans, pinto beans or kidney beans 
Bring all ingredients to a boil in a large stock pot.  Reduce heat, cover partially with lid and simmer 30 minutes, or until all vegetables are heated through.  Serve immediately.
Notes - serve topped with toasted corn tortilla strips, shredded Mexican or Cheddar cheese, some fresh Cilantro, and a dollop of sour cream.
Bring soup to a boil, but do not simmer.  Immediately ladle soup into hot, sterilized canning jars, evenly distributing the soup leaving 1/4" head space. Seal with lids and process in pressure canner 90 minutes at 10 lbs. pressure. Remove canner from heat and allow pressure to come down on its own. Remove jars and let sit on a kitchen towel on your countertop 24 hours undisturbed.  Jars are sealed when button in the middle of the lid is fully depressed. 
Yield: 4.5 quart jars


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