Yucatan Chicken Lime Soup

by Hilary Gauntt on December 30, 2011

This recipe was printed in the LA Times as a cure for the common cold; full of Vitamin “C”, sinus expanding spices, and chicken broth. More importantly, it is absolutely delicious, with bright clear flavors. Cousin Diana Brown sent this to us, and I knew it would be good….she is one of the most amazing people I’ve ever met, and her friendship is one of the gifts I received when I became part of my husband’s extended family. She lost her husband Steve 9 years ago today to lung cancer, and raised three young children on her own. She teaches 2nd grade in a school where most kids qualify for a free lunch, and was a nominee for Teacher of the Year in San Diego.  And she still manages to be there for everyone else.  With half her energy and optimism, I would think I could rule the world.

My 90 year old Mother-in-law Barbara missed all the Christmas festivities this year; down with a terrible cold.  I knew just what would do the trick……..

3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or 2 cups shredded cooked chicken meat left over from making stock.

1 Tbs. oil

1 medium onion, thinly sliced and then sliced in half

8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced (milder sliced than chopped!)

1-4 Serrano or jalapeno chilies, thinly sliced

5-6 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup fresh lime juice or to taste

1 large tomato cut into 1/2 inch dice

salt and pepper

1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

tortilla chips

1/2 cup rice,  and sliced avocado, optional

Rinse and dry chicken breasts and dice . Heat olive oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Add onion, garlic and chili slices and cook over medium heat until lightly browned, about 5 minutes.  Stir in chicken stock, lime juice, chicken and tomato.  Gently simmer soup until chicken is cooked( or warmed if already cooked.)  Add salt and pepper to taste and extra lime juice if desired (soup should be highly seasoned). Stir in cilantro. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle with broken tortilla chips.  Makes 4-5 servings.

Notes:  I poured boxed chicken stock/broth into a large saucepan, and added two half breasts with skin and bones and simmered it until the chicken was done.  I wanted this to be a complete meal, so I also tossed in about a  half cup of rice to cook along with the chicken.  I removed the chicken to cool and then removed the meat and shredded it. Added it back in with the cooked rice in the broth, and the chile and onion mixture. I used just two of the chiles and removed the seeds (if you leave them in it will be SPICY).  The lime juice flavor mellows upon reheating.  Sliced avocado is a great addition! Delicious.

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