Tortilla Soup (adapted from Mexican Everyday, by Rick Bayless)
1 large dried pasilla or ancho chile
1 15 oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes and their juice
2 tbls olive oil
1 medium white onion, sliced
3 garlic gloves, peeled
2 quarts chicken broth
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, but into 1/2 inch cubes
1 large ripe avocado
6 oz Mexican Queso Fresco cheese
1 large lime
Toast the chile by turning it an inch or two above an open flame for a few seconds, until you smell the aroma. Or if you don't have a gas stove, toast it for a few seconds in a dry pan on medium heat. Break into pieces and put in your blender with the tomatoes and their juice.
Heat the oil in a large 4 qt saucepan over medium high. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until golden, about 7 minutes. Scoop up the onion and garlic with a slotted spoon and transfer to blender. Process until smooth.
Place the pan back on medium heat. When hot, add the puree and stir constantly until thickened about 6 minutes. Add the broth. Reduce to medium low and simmer 15 minutes. Taste and season with salt to your taste.
Just before serving, add the chicken to the broth. Divide the avocado, cheese, and chips among your serving bowls. When the chicken is done, pour the soup into the bowls. Squeeze the fresh lime over each serving.
Enchilada Soup (by Mom)
1 tbls olive oil
1 lb chicken breasts
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic pressed
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup Masa Harina
3 cups water
1 cup enchilada sauce
16 oz velveeta
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add chicken breasts and brown 4 to 5 minutes per side. Set chicken aside. Add onions and garlic to pot and saute for about 2 minutes. Add chicken broth. Combine Masa Harina with 2 cups water in a medium bowl and whisk until blended. Add to onion mixture with remaining water, enchilada sauce, cheese and spices and bring mixture to a boil. Shred the chicken into bite size pieces and add to soup mixture. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes or until thick. Serve with shredded cheese, crumbled corn tortillas, and salsa.