Mexican Chicken, Chili and Grilled Corn soup

This soup has kick and is very satisfying on a rainy day (like today)   It makes a full pot so you will have plenty left over.  The heat of the peppers combined with the sweetness of the corn is fabulous.  A little bit of sour from the lime and it has everything.
note: we ate this for three days for both lunch and dinner and at the end of those three days my husband turned to me and asked- “Can we make this again within the week?”.  it’s that good. 

First you have to make your chicken broth
The Broth
Chicken Broth Ingredients:

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic, smashed
2 large red onions, rough chopped
2 cups carrots, rough chopped
2 cups celery, rough chopped
Course salt and fresh ground black pepper
1 whole organic chicken
1 sprig thyme
1/3 cup Italian parsley
1 bay leaf
1 sprig tarragon
1/3 cup celery leaves
8 whole black peppercorns

1. Heat the oil in a large pot over med. heat.  Add the crushed garlic cloves and sauté for 2 minutes until the garlic is golden. Add the onions, carrots & celery to the pot. Season with salt and pepper and sauté for 8 minutes. 

2. Cut up your chicken into pieces with a heavy cleaver- making sure to cut the bones to expose some marrow.  Add to pot and fill the pot with water until it covers the chicken, bring to a boil.

3.  Tie the thyme, parsley, bay leaf, tarragon and celery leaves into a bouquet using butchers twine.  Add to the pot.  Add the black peppercorns to pot, bring broth to a boil, turn down to med-low, partially cover and simmer for 3 hours.  (add more water if required 1/2 way through cooking)

4. Skim off any fat, strain the chicken broth through a mesh sieve, then strain again through cheese cloth a couple of times until your broth is nice and clear.  Leave to sit and separate a while so that you can skim off the fat.  (I have a special fat skimming container that I use)

5. Hand pick the the good chicken meat and set it aside for soup recipe.

The Soup!
Mexican Chicken, Chili and Grilled Corn Soup
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 chipotle peppers (in adobo sauce) minced
1 hot Anaheim New Mexico chili, reconstituted and chopped
1 red onion, diced
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne
1/4 tsp. paprika
course salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
5 cups chicken broth  (if you don’t have enough, top it up with water)
1 cup fresh tomatoes, chopped coarse and smushed with the side of a knife
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 1/2 cups cooked chicken (hand picked from your broth earlier)
1 handful cilantro , chopped
1/2 cup wild rice
2 cobs of corn, grilled
canola oil for grilling
1 cup canned, strained black beans
1 tsp. sucanat (or brown sugar)
handful of cilantro, minced (and some  for garnish)
Fried corn tortillas for topping
Fresh lime to taste
Creme fraiche or sour cream for the dairy lovers

1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over med. heat.  Add garlic and sauté for 2 minutes.  Add chipotles, chilies, red onion, cumin, cayenne, paprika, salt and fresh ground pepper.  Sauté for 8 minutes.  

2. Add the chicken broth, the tomatoes, oregano, hand picked chicken meat and a handful of cilantro.  Partially cover and simmer for 40 minutes.

3. In a separate pot, boil some water, add wild rice and cook according to package, strain.

4. Heat some canola oil, brush some oil on the corn  and grill your corn either in a cast iron pan or on a grill.  You want each side to be grill marked (slightly brown).  Slice off the corn niblets.

5.  In a cast iron pan, heat some oil on medium and add corn tortillas slices, fry until golden, set aside on paper towels.

6.  Add the corn niblets, wild rice and black beans to the soup and stir to combine.  Season with salt, pepper, sucanat and cilantro.

7. Serve soup with crispy tortillas, a squirt of fresh lime, and some creme fraiche or sour cream if you eat dairy.

Chicken Enchiladas & Red Chili Sauce

 Ken has been holding on to this recipe from his fav site (Cooks Illustrated) to try for several years.  We finally made it and wowzers!  it was good.  I made mine completely dairy free and he used dairy.  Either way we loved it and highly recommend this easy Mexican inspired dish

Sauce & Filling-

1 1/2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 med. onion, chopped fine
6 garlic cloves, pressed (about a Tbsp)
3 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. sucanat (sugar)
4 chicken thighs, trimmed of fat and cut into 1/4″ strips
2 -8 ounce cans of crushed tomato’s
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 -4 ounce can pickled jalapenos, drained and chopped
(2 cups sharp cheddar cheese for those of you who eat dairy)*

Tortillas & toppings

10 -6″ corn tortilla’s
vegetable oil
1/2 head romaine lettuce, washed and shredded
2 limes, quartered
salsa or chopped tomato
(cheese and sour cream if you eat dairy)*
Guacamole-  ( I made mine with 3 avocados, pitted and diced, juice of 1 lime, 1 jalapeno pepper diced, some red pepper flakes, a bit of salt, a bit of olive oil, chopped cilantro and 1/2 small onion chopped)


1. Start on the sauce and filling-  Heat oil in med saucepan over med/high heat until shimmering, add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and beginning to brown (5 minutes).  Add garlic, chili powder, coriander, cumin, salt & sucanat, cook, stirring constantly for 30 seconds.  Add chicken, stir to coat for another 30 seconds. Add crushed tomato’s & 1/4 cup water, stir to separate chicken pieces.  Bring to a roll, reduce heat to med. low and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through (8 minutes).

2. Pour the mixture through a med. mesh strainer into a medium size bowl.  Use the backside of a ladle to press the chicken and onion mixture and the liquid sauce will extract.  Set the chili sauce aside.

3.  Transfer the chicken onion mixture to a plate and place in freezer to cool (10 minutes).

4.  Once cool, combine the chicken onion mixture with cilantro, jalapeno, (cheese)* in a med. bowl and set aside.

5.  Preheat oven to 300° F with rack on lower middle position.

6.  Smear a 13×9 inch baking dish with 3/4 cup chili sauce.  Set aside.

7.  Lightly spray tortillas with oil and place on baking sheet, bake for 3 minutes until soft and pliable.  Remove from oven and increase the temp. to 400° F  for the next step.

8.  Fill each tortilla with about 1/3 cup filling.  Roll each tortilla by hand and place in baking dish, side by side and seam side down. 

9.  Pour remaining chili sauce over the enchiladas.  (and sprinkle with cheese)*

10.  Cover baking dish with foil and bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes.  uncover and serve with guacamole, lettuce, lime wedges, salsa or tomato (cheese and sour cream)*

*- dairy or soy products for those of you who eat that.

ten thousand ingredient Fajitas

Ha! We were watching Bobby Flay throw down on TV the other night and wanted to make his fajitas. Dude makes some long complicated food! We really enjoyed the taste though!

We added to the complication by making our own gluten free Curry paste for his recipe. Also, a few gluten free substitutions and omissions here and there.

First of all. Keep in mind that you need to marinade the steak for 4- 8 hours.

Read through everything several times before starting.
The Curry Paste will keep for a week in the fridge- use it in another dish that week!
The BBQ sauce will keep in the fridge for 1 week. Barbecue some chicken with it another day!
The BBQ Rub will last for ages in a sealed container. Again, nice on any meat or veggie!

I would prepare it in this order.
1. start by making the curry paste, make marinade and marinade the steak in the morning.
2. make the BBQ rub and BBQ sauce.
3. make the avocado crema
4. grill the steaks, let sit
5. grill the onions while warming the tortillas and letting the steak sit.
6. eat three helpings like we did. :)

Here we go-

Curry Paste-

1 shallot, chopped fine
2 tsp. gluten free Thai chili sauce
4 cloves garlic, pressed
1 thumb size piece of fresh ginger, chopped fine
2 Tbsp organic tomato ketchup
1/2 Tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
3 Tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp. dried shrimp, ground in a mortar and pestle.
1 tsp. sucanat
2 Tbsp chili powder
2/3 cup coconut milk
2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice


1. Place everything in a blender and blend until smooth.
store in an airtight container in fridge for up to 7 days.

BBQ Rub-


3/4 cup chili powder
1/4 cup paprika
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp ground coriander
1 Tbsp dry mustard
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 Tbsp ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. coarse salt


1. Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container until ready to use

BBQ Sauce-


6 Tbsp canola oil
1 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, pressed
2 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp paprika
1 cup organic tomato ketchup
1/3 cup water
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 canned chipoltle chile in adobo, chopped
2 Tbsp sucanat
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp molasses
salt and pepper to taste


1. Heat the oil over med heat in a heavy saucepan. Add the onions and cook until soft (3 min). Add the garlic and cook for 1 min. Add the ketchup and water, bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

2. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for an additional 10 minutes until thickened, stirring occasionally.

3. Transfer mixture to a food processor and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a bowl and allow to come to room temperature.

Barbecued Onions


BBQ rub (see above)
BBQ Sauce (see above)

2 Walla Walla onions cut into 1/4 thick slices
canola oil

(also slice up some red pepper to grill beside the onions if you like)


1. Heat cast iron pan on medium. Brush the onion slices with oil and season with salt and pepper. Season one side of the slices with BBQ rub.

2. Grill the onions rub-side down until lightly golden brown. Flip over, brush with BBQ sauce and grill until just cooked through. Separate the slices into rings and serve with the fajitas.

Avocado Crema


2 ripe Hass avocados, peeled, pitted and chopped
1/4 cup water
1 lime, juice of
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp. honey
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste.


1. Place the avocado, water, lime juice, rice vinegar, and honey in a blender. Blend until smooth. Add the cilantro and season with salt and pepper to taste. Blend to incorporate. (store in fridge until ready to serve.)



1/4 cup red curry paste(see above)
1/2 cup canola oil
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 1/2 pounds skirt steak, cut in half or thirds crosswise
salt and fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
12 organic corn tortillas, wrapped in foil and warmed in oven
BBQ onions (see above)
Avocada Crema (see above)


1. Combine the curry paste (see above), canola oil, and 1/4 cup of the lime juice in a food processor until smooth.

2. Place the steak in a large baking dish and add half the marinade. Turn to coat the steak in the marinade, pour the remaining marinade over, cover and refrigerate for 4 – 8 hours .

3. Whisk together the honey and remaining lime juice in a bowl.

4. Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Remove steak from marinade and season with salt and pepper on both sides. Grill the steak until golden brown and slightly charred on both sides, brushing with honey lime juice a few times and cook to medium rare, about 12 minutes total. (about 120 or 125° internal temp.) Remove from grill and let sit for 10 minutes before slicing across the grain into thin slices. Place meat on a platter.

5. Lay warm tortillas on a flat surface, add a few slices of beef down the center, top with onion slices, grilled peppers and small dollops of avocado crema. Roll and eat.

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