Tortilla Soup with feta & tortilla strips

Tortilla soup is a Mexican classic and one we’ve had on our menu at Wahaca many times. Have a crack at making it at home, making it mild or spicy depending on who is tucking in and letting everyone decide what toppings they fancy based on what you can get your hands on… 

 

Ingredients – Feeds 6

3 tbsp olive oil

2 onions, peeled and cut into wedges

3 cloves garlic, left in skins

1 heaped tbsp chipotle paste (and/or 1-2 fresh chillies (optional))

7-8 ripe tomatoes (or 2 tins plum tomatoes)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tsp dried oregano (or 1 tbsp fresh, or fresh thyme)

1.5 litres chicken or vegetable stock

1-2 corn tortillas, blanched in oil (or 1-2 tbsp fine polenta)

 

Top it off with as many of the below as you can find…

1 ripe Hass avocado

2 corn tortillas (or 2 flatbreads), cut into skinny strips and fried

2 ancho chillies, seeds and stems removed and torn into walnut-sized pieces and fried

100g feta cheese, crumbled (or grated Pecorino)

A small handful of chopped coriander

100ml Sour cream

 

Method

Heat a frying pan and add the onions, fresh tomatoes, garlic and whole chillies, if using.

 

Dry roast the vegetables for 10-15 minutes until blackened and soft.  The garlic will be ready sooner – it is done when the cloves are soft.  Once the vegetables are charred and softened blitz them in an upright blender.

 

Now heat the oil in a large casserole and when hot add your pureed tomato and veg and turn down the heat to medium low.  Season well before adding the chipotle paste, sugar and herbs. Cook for 5 minutes.

 

Add the stock and simmer for a further 10 minutes.

 

Add the blanched tortillas (or polenta) and blitz again with a stick blender until the soup is smooth.  Leave on a low heat for at least five minutes before you eat.

 

Top if off…

 

Meanwhile assemble as many garnishes as you can get hold of.

 

Dice the flesh of the avocado, squeezing with a little lemon or lime juice to stop them discolouring.

 

Heat the oil in a frying pan. Test the oil and when it makes a tortilla strip sizzle add the strips and cook until crisp and golden.  Remove the pieces with a slotted spoon onto a plate lined with kitchen paper.

 

Repeat with the ancho chilli pieces for approx. 15 seconds until puffed up – if you cook them longer they will burn and turn bitter.

 

Serve the soup in bowls with your choice of garnishes laid out in small bowls or plates so that people can help themselves at the table.

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