Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Clean Out the Cupboards Soup!

I've been on a soup kick lately, as I am sure you know if you've been following along. I've mostly been coming up with my own recipes... with some great success and some big flops. I did not share with you the Butternut Squash, Sausage, and Kale Soup fiasco (I should have followed someone else's recipe!), nor did I tell you about my inability to follow a recipe that was right in front of me when I attempted to make Stuffed Bell Pepper Soup (yes, it really does make a big difference if you add uncooked rice when the recipe calls for cooked rice!).  Those were quiet weeks.  Yet another flop, I was making some Italian Red Pepper Soup for my husband, so to save myself some work, I threw ingredients for Chicken and Vegetable Soup in the crock pot... onions, garlic, boneless skinless chicken breasts, celery, carrot, broth and Herbes de Provence.  Ugh.  Disaster!  Trust me, don't try it!!!!  Ick.

Since I've been on such a soup kick lately, I splurged and bought a copy of a soup magazine on the newsstand at Sam's Club.  This week, I was craving a brothy chicken soup with celery, carrot, and onion... and wild rice.  I went looking though my new magazine to see if I could find a similar recipe, and stumbled across a recipe for CHICKEN TORTILLA CHOWDER.  It occurred to me that I had nearly every ingredient for this recipe in my kitchen already.  Being thrifty, I decided to make this soup instead of the soup I was craving.  I was a bit hesitant to make this recipe and even considered making up just half a recipe, but I figured I did not want 1/2 a can of this and 1/2 a can of this in my refrigerator... so I went for it and made this huge pot of soup.  The results:  Comfort in a bowl!  Yep, tastes like comfort food, very good for a cold Autumn or Winter day.  Probably pretty fattening, so I portioned this out into lots of servings and plan to freeze several smaller containers for a grab-and-go-lunch for work when I run out of other leftovers for lunch.

Chicken Tortilla Chowder
2 cans of condensed cream of chicken soup (undiluted)
2 cans of cream of potato soup (undiluted)
1 can of chicken broth (14 ounce size) low sodium, low fat, no MSG
2 cups of milk (I used 1%  milk)
1 small can of chopped green chilies
1 can Mexicorn (11 ounce size)
9 ounces of chopped cooked chicken
3 eight inch flour tortillas (chopped into bite size strips)
1 cup of grated cheddar cheese (I used about 8 ounces of Velveeta cheese)

In a large pot, combine the soups, chicken broth, and milk. Stir with a whisk to combine; bring to a boil.
Add in the remaining ingredients and allow to simmer for about five minutes.
Pretty darn easy, huh?  The flour tortillas in this soup looked like big egg noodles as they were simmering away.  I am enjoying this soup.  I did add some black pepper but no additional salt was needed.  I tried to use the lower fat and reduced sodium soups in my cupboards.  I think if I were to make this soup again, I might add two cans of the green chilies instead of just one.  And in case you were wondering, the only ingredients I had to go out and buy specifically for this recipe were the Mexicorn and the chicken.  We had steaks the other night, so when the steaks came off the grill, I had my husband throw the chicken on the grill.  We forgot about the chicken while we were enjoying our steaks.  Whoops!  I had charred grilled chicken in my soup, but the original recipe calls for the pre-cooked chicken strips you can buy in bags in the freezer section at the grocery store.

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