Food On Friday - Mexican Chicken Soup with Jalapeno Cornbread

February 4, 2011

I don't know about you, but by the time Friday rolls around, I am starting to think about what I am going to eat/cook over the weekend.

Because of my somewhat hectic work schedule, I don't usually do a lot of elaborate cooking or meals during the week. I tend to gravitate towards things that are quick and easy, but by the time the weekend gets here, I like to cook a few things in large quantities so I know that we will have some leftovers to start our week.

With the rediculously cold winter we are experiencing, I have been looking for comfort food recipes. My family LOVES a hearty soup, so last weekend I decided to try one that has a little extra heat.

Stirring the pot BLOG
The Barefoot Contessa's Mexican Chicken Soup

4 split (2 whole) chicken breasts, bone in, skin on
Good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chopped onions (2 onions)
1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
2 1/2 quarts chicken stock
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes in puree, crushed
2 to 4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, optional
6 (6-inch) fresh white corn tortillas

Toppings for serving
sliced avocado
sour cream
grated Cheddar cheese
tortilla chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the chicken breasts skin side up on a sheet pan. Rub with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until done. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones, and shred the meat. Cover and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the onions, celery, and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, or until the onions start to brown. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the chicken stock, tomatoes with their puree, jalapenos, cumin, coriander, 1 tablespoon salt (depending on the saltiness of the chicken stock), 1 teaspoon pepper, and the cilantro, if using. Cut the tortillas in 1/2, then cut them crosswise into 1/2-inch strips and add to the soup. Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes. Add the shredded chicken and season to taste. Serve the soup hot topped with sliced avocado, a dollop of sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, and broken tortilla chips.

Mexican Tortilla Soup and Jalapeno Cornbread Collage BLOG

While looking through my Barefoot Contessa cookbook I also found a recipe for Jalapeno Cornbread and I thought it would go perfectly with this soup.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups milk
3 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, plus extra to grease the pan
8 ounces aged extra-sharp Cheddar, grated, divided
1/3 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts, plus extra for garnish, 3 scallions
3 tablespoons seeded and minced fresh jalapeno peppers
Combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, eggs, and butter. With a wooden spoon, stir the wet ingredients into the dry until most of the lumps are dissolved. Don't overmix! Mix in 2 cups of the grated Cheddar, the scallions and jalapenos, and allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking pan.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle with the remaining grated Cheddar and extra chopped scallions. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and cut into large squares. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Mexican Soup Close Up BLOG
We REALLY loved this meal! I did doctor up the soup a little bit by adding a can of black beans(drained and rinsed)and some frozen corn. I personally love both, but you could probably add any of your favorite veggies and it would taste great. Also, the one thing you will not want to skip in this dish is the homemade tortilla chips. They were so good that Nick asked me to make more so he could eat them as a snack. It is totally worth the extra couple of minutes to cut and pan fry them instead of buying premade tortilla chips from the my opinion:)

Since this is super bowl weekend, I figured I would share this because it would be perfect to feed a crowd!! If by chance you are celebrating Chinese New Year instead, you might want to check out THESE recipes for your celebration!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.
Gong Xi Fa Cai!
(Happy Chinese New Year)


Rosie Grey said...

That looks really delicious and reads easy to make! Thanks so much for sharing! Have a wonderful weekend and a Happy Chinese New Year!

Love Letters To China said...

YUM!!! Even though it's 7:20 in the morning, looking at these pictures makes me want a bowl. ;-)

Funny you mention thinking about food already for the weekend...I remember my mom and grandma always talking about what's for lunch during breakfast, what's for dinner during lunch and so on... I have definitely continued with that tradition!

Hope you have a wonderful Friday Lisa!


Jodee said...

That looks soooo good! Our family would love that meal. I better forward the recipes to Chef Daddy!

Hope you have a great weekend!

Unknown said...

Well my friend you just made my mouth water - LOL! Your food photography is GORGEOUS! Beautiful set-up! It sure looks delicious! :-)

Enjoy being warmed up by the chili and your beautiful family this weekend!
xoxox Jill

carolinagirl said... is amazing how you can capture food. Seriously...these photos are gorgeous! That cornbread has my mouth watering. We LOVE peppers.

Hope you have a great weekend.

Everything Beautiful Shay said...

Mmmmm~ it's wet and cold here... the perfect weather for a cup of this delish soup! The images are just beautiful!!! Can't wait to try it!

Anonymous said...

It looks fabulous!!!! I love, love, love tortilla soup! The more cilantro, the better for me!

Sandra said...

It looks delicious and perfect for a cold day! Have a great weekend :-)

Maddy said...

IT looks fabulous!! I'm all about Tex-Mex cuisine :) I need to start doing more on cooking on the weekends, but the weekends tend to be even more busy for me than the weekdays!

Gail said...

All I can say is YUM!!
We love soups and especially this time of the year. :)

Fabulous pictures as always.

Hope you have a great weekend.


Marla said...

Yummmm! I can't wait to try this one!!!

Happy weekend, my friend!

Lori said...

Your meal looks yummy Lisa! We just had cornbread this week too!
I will have to try the homemade tortillas! Have a great weekend, Happy Chinese New Year!

likeschocolate said...

Looks amazing! Can I come for dinner! I will bring the desert!

Patricia said...

Mmmmmm!! I never met a recipe from Barefoot Contessa that I didn't like! ;) Will definitely be trying THIS one!! All of my favorite things!!

Thanks for sharing (love those photos too!)

Lori Lynn said...

My stomach is growling already. Your pictures make the food look amazing (and I am a vegetarian). The cornbread is calling my name.

I'll have to come up with something for this weekend too! Thanks for the inspiration.

Karli @ The Bonnie 5 said...

Only you could get beautiful sparkly bokeh circles in your soup! It looks delicious! :-)

Michelle R Photography said...

Looks yummy!! Your food always looks so appetizing. You do such a great job, not only cooking it, but displaying it and photographing it. Photographing food is not easy, but you make it look like it is!

Have a great weekend!!


Zwickl Family said...

This looks absolutely delicious! I'm not a fan of spicy foods, but my husband is.

I might be making this one in the near future just for him.


Anonymous said...

Oh this looks yummy Lisa! I can just picture you in that beautiful kitchen of yours whipping this up. I have been trying out alot of new soups this year too. It must be this cold yucky weather we are having! I hope you are all staying warm and safe!


Between You and Me said...

I am so, so glad that I found your blog......I love it!

Adding you to my sidebar!

We have a daughter from China...brought her home in Dec. of 07.....

Diane said...

OMG!!! THIS LOOKS SOOOOO GOOD!!! I was just going to "surf" for Super Bowl Day Dishes and now I found one!!! Thanks For Sharing:)


Have a GREAT weekend!

Sharon Fritchman said...

the Barefoot Contessa should hire you to do her photography . . . everyone would be running to try them, just like I want to give this recipe a try, right now!! But alas, we are in the midst of another ice storm, so I can't today. But I am content to look at your beautiful photos and listen to your soft and lovely music!