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STUPID Easy January 14, 2010

Posted by Toy Lady in Cooking, Food, random stuff.
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Do you do the Google home page thing?  You know, how you can “subscribe” to different “feeds” on your “homepage?”

OK, I’m done with the “quotes” now.

But seriously.  You can add most blogs (ahem) or news feeds, or, well, all sorts of stuff, just by clicking on the RSS thingy, and clicking on Add to Google Homepage and there you go, every new entry just magically appears on your Google homepage.

So anyway.  A long time ago, I subscribed to Cooking Light‘s feed on my homepage, and I’ve had some interesting recipes turn up, including one just the other day for Chipotle Chicken and Tomato Soup.

I clicked through, took a look at the recipe, and I thought, hey, I’ve got pretty much everything on hand to make that, and it sounds Pretty Not Bad, so we decided to put it together for swim class last week.  And it really was Pretty Darn Not Bad, too, even though I, well, I didn’t exactly follow the recipe.

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I actually improved it, I think.  Not that I’d know, really, since I didn’t make it as written, but I’m pretty sure.  I definitely simplified it, which is an improvement itself, isn’t it?

Of course it is.

The first thing I did was assemble the ingredients – what we had on hand that would go together to make a nice chicken and tomato soup.

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I started with a pint each of homemade salsa, diced tomatoes, and chicken stock.  If I weren’t using pints, I’d go with a 12- or 16-oz jar of salsa, and 14-oz cans of diced tomatoes and low-sodium chicken broth.  Add a dash (1/2 teaspoon, maybe) of cumin; dump it all in a good-sized saucepan (or small Dutch oven) and start heating.

While that’s heating, drain and rinse a 16-oz can of each black beans and pinto beans, and dump those into the soup, along with some chipotle pepper.  (Once you open the can, just dump the whole thing into a food processor and puree it.  Freeze in ice cube trays until solid, then transfer cubes to a small baggie – you’ve now got enough chipotle for MONTHS!  You never need more than one cube.)

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As you’ll recall, towards the end of the summer last year, Peeps picked up a “club pack” of boneless, skinless chicken breasts and smoked them, then we just shoved them in the freezer, just like that.  We’ve done the same with grilled chicken breasts, too, in past years – there’s just nothing like that grilled taste in the middle of the winter. . . . if you don’t happen to have 2 or 3 grilled or smoked breasts in the freezer, go ahead and just use any cooked chicken – left over, or rotisserie chicken, or even shove some under the broiler.

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Dice the chicken into spoon-sized pieces (about 1/2 to 3/4 inch dice is nice), and go ahead and toss that into your soup, along with some frozen corn.

Guess what – you know how I said we got chicken to smoke at the end of the summer?  We got a bunch of corn, too, at the end of the season, when it was something like 10 for $1, and grilled that, too.

I’m telling you – there is nothing better than fresh corn, grilled and brushed with butter. . . the next best thing is fresh corn grilled, cut off the cobs, and enjoyed in the dead of winter – YUM!

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And that’s it – stupid easy soup – it takes about 15 minutes to throw together, it’s bursting with bright, zesty flavor, and it’s full of healthy stuff and low on unhealthy stuff. . . while you could certainly garnish with sour cream, I found that to be just a bit much – I really liked the clean, spicy flavor as is.  And, of course, leftovers make AWESOME lunches, too!

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Comments

1. sjbraun - January 14, 2010

Hmmm … that does sound really yummy, and easy enough that I could probably handle it 🙂 I might have to switch pinto beans as my husband has decided he doesn’t like the flavor of those. And a stupid question – what IS chipotle pepper? I assume from your post it comes in cans … is it like green chilies or something? By the Mexican stuff at the store? Maybe I can report on this for Third Thursday 🙂

Certainly swap out the pinto beans – I think the original recipe I started with (“was inspired by” 🙄 ) called for great northern beans, so. . . there ya go! 😉

Chipotle chiles are jalapeno peppers that have smoked, then preserved in a tomato-y sauce (“adobo sauce”). They’re a little spicy, a little smoky, and yes, they’re in those little cans about the same size as those green chilies come in. I think just about every time I see a recipe that uses them, it calls for just one or two, “chopped, with adobo sauce” so I puree the whole can and just assume a single chipotle equals maybe a teaspoon or so. 😉

2. judy - January 14, 2010

This soup looks so easy and looks so GOOD. Great for swimming lessons day.

Exactly, Jude!


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