When someone asked me if I had a recipe for Chicken Tortilla soup a couple of weeks ago, I was surprised that my answer was no. Chicken tortilla is one of my favorite soups. The flavors are warm and the chicken and corn make it hearty. It is perfect for those days in late November when Mother Nature decides to blast you with a blizzard. Of course a blizzard in Seattle terms means about 2 inches of snow, but that is besides the point.
The week of Thanksgiving, Mother Nature slapped Seattle upside the head. The snow. Would. Not. Stop. It turned our freeway into a parking lot. Hills into a bus driver’s nightmare and sidewalks to ice rinks. It took people hours upon hours to get home. Buses were stranded. By the time that I got home, 2 hours after I had left work, I was frozen, my nose was cold, my feet were cold. It took Ryan another 1 1/2 hours to get home and he had to walk an extra 10 blocks because his bus couldn’t make it to the stop. Needless to say when it came time for dinner I just wanted to make something quick and something to warm us up.
Soup was the first thing that came to mind. And because someone asked me about chicken tortilla soup I decided to make that. All of the ingredients are staples in my home so it was pretty easy to throw it together. If you have access and aren’t trapped in your house due to 2 inches of snow, make this soup really easy by using one of those roasted chickens you can buy at the grocery store.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and jalapenos. Cook 3 - 4 minutes or until slightly softened. Stir in cumin, chili powder and cayenne pepper. Cook 1 more minute.
Pour in roasted tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium low to simmer. Stir in beans, kosher salt, chicken, corn, lime juice and lime zest. Allow to simmer 10 - 15 more minutes. While the soup is simmering prepare your tortilla strips.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drizzle remaining olive oil over the corn tortillas, cut into strips and bake for 5 - 7 minutes or until crispy.
Ladle soup into bowls, top with corn tortilla strips and cilantro.