The days are shorter, the air is chillier, and we’re quickly approaching the final weeks of the year, which means that a) time to pull out that crockpot, because ain’t nobody have time to cook any more these days with end-of-the year projects to finish, exams coming up, holiday parties to plan, gifts to shop for, Starbucks lines to be stuck in, etc. and b) I want to eat soup now.
I found this recipe online a while back, probably on Pintrest again, for not just one, but TWO creations that can be made by just leaving chicken in that magical pot for 8 hours on low: chicken tacos…and for the leftover chicken (which you should have, unless you really wanted all the chicken for tacos), chicken tortilla soup.
Not sure how this recipe ended up on a blog called “Chocolate Therapy”, but you can find it here.
It’s so simple that I shouldn’t have even posted it as a “challenge”.
- 1 envelope of Taco Seasoning (I used what Chocolate Therapy used, Old El Paso, reduced sodium)
- 6 pieces of boneless, skinless chicken breasts*
- 1 16-oz jar of salsa (I used Pace)
*I believe this recipe is for 12 people. I can’t eat for 12 people, so I reduced the number of chicken breasts in half but didn’t alter the amount of salsa or taco seasoning.
Before I went to work, I dumped all of this into a crockpot at 7 am and left it until I came back at 5:30 pm.
Then I made like Edward Scissorhands and shredded that chicken UP. Just kidding. I used two forks, not scissors. I guess you could use scissors if you wanted to (though I do not recommend it).
I took Chocolate Therapy’s advice and made my own guacamole (avocado, tomato, red onion, lime juice) and dabbed a dollop of Daisy. I wanted to note that Daisy sour cream comes with a very picturesque landscape image of waves gently washing upon a smooth beach under a cool gray sky. How relaxing.
I ate these tacos for lunch and dinner for two days. But I never got tired of them!
Then it was time to use the leftover chicken for the tortilla soup, which was great, because the temperature was dropping and I was in need for some soup, andI wanted to maintain the southwestern motif I had going on that week.
- 2 cups of the shredded chicken (I had PLENTY of that)
- one 32 oz box of chicken broth
- one can of corn, drained
- 2 handfulls of chopped cilantro
- one squeezed lime
- one can of diced tomatoes
- one can of diced tomatoes with chili (aka Rotel)
- 1/2 yellow onion
- one can black beans (I drained this too. Not sure if necessary, but I did it anyway)
- 2-3 tbsp of tomato paste
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp chili powder (FYI: You spelled “chili” like the country, Chocoloate Therapy)
- 2 tsp garlic powder
SURPRISINGLY, I had all of those spices on hand (if you count cayenne pepper as chili pepper, and yes, I do). How often does that happen? Not often, I tell you.
Again, I dumped all those things in a pot and let it cook on low for 30 minutes.
While I let the soup cook, I wondered, what does one do with leftover tomato paste? It already comes in such a tiny can, what am I supposed to do with a tiny bit of leftover tomato paste?
Forget the tomato paste. This soup was the bomb dot com.
A great way to combat the cold weather. I sprinkled just the right amount of chili pepper to give it a little kick in each bite. I didn’t expect all those tomato flavors and the chicken broth to make such an excellent combo.
Side story: I meant to get tortilla chips or something for this, since it’s called “tortilla soup”. I mean, that makes sense, right? Where are the tortillas?
I didn’t get a chance to go out and get tortilla chips, but since I convinced myself I should have tortilla chips accompany this soup, I tried to make crispy tortillas out of the left over soft tortillas from the chicken tacos by toasting them.
It was a bad idea.
So….next time I’m just going to get the Tostitos.
Presentation: Pretty good! I went overboard with the guacamole, but that’s all right.
Edibility: Edible for a whole week!
Tastiness: Southwestern never tasted so good.