A few weeks ago, I made tortilla soup inspired by a recipe from one of my favorite Canadian cook books “Whitewater Cooks at Home “, by Shelly Adams. It was with all the trimmings and it was so tasty and so good. Spicy, hearty and full of intense flavors. It was such a success that I named it “Tortilla Soup from Heaven”. And then I started thinking, hmmm, how can I make a healthier version of this?
I guess I have been wanting to make soup lately because the weather on the West Coast of Canada has been kind of crummy, cold and rainy – I heard someone call it Junuary – so quite frankly, when the weather is like this, you need a good soup to comfort the soul and brighten the spirit.
The soup above is so tasty and so good – it has all the trimmings, chicken, tasty cheese and fried tortillas!
Okay – so I really wanted to create a healthy version of this. And this is what I came up with – a healthy variation inspired by my earlier Taco Soup from Heaven.
Instead of chicken, cheese and fried tacos, I added sautéed mushrooms and zucchini with lemon and garlic and steamed quinoa.
For 6 portions
1 small tbsp ground cumin
5 cloves of garlic
2 small bunches of fresh cilantro
half a small red chili
2 small tbsp of flour
2 teaspoons of sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
6-7 sun ripe tomatoes
1.2 liter of mushroom broth
1/2 cup of sprouted quinoa
400 g of brown mushrooms
1 medium-sized zucchini
Finely chop the shalots and the garlic, throughly rinse (one bunch)the fresh cilantro and chop it, finely chop the chili, cut the tomatoes. In a pot heat some olive oil, add the shalots, the garlic, the cumin, and the cilantro, saute till all is soft.
Add the chopped tomatoes and saute till the tomatoes are tender, add salt – add it to the blender and blend into a smooth sauce.
Add a bit more olive oil to the pot and add the flour, whisk it around till it has dissolved, put it back on the heat and add the tomato mix, reduce over medium heat for about 5-10 minutes while stirring. Add the mushroom broth.
Cook 1/2 cup of sprouted quinoa – set aside.
Stir fry the mushrooms in olive oil until they are golden brown, add a squeeze of lemon juice, some freshly pressed garlic and sea salt. Saute the zucchini till golden, add lemon juice, freshly pressed garlic and sea salt.
To the soup add a small bunch of finely chopped fresh cilantro, the juice of one lime – taste with salt and pepper.
In a bowl put the quinoa, some mushrooms, some zucchini and some avocado bites
– pour the hot soup over the mixture and serve
If you would like to make the original “Tortilla Soup from Heaven” with chicken, cheese, etc., just follow the recipe above but use chicken broth instead of mushroom broth. And use chicken instead of mushrooms and zucchini.
In the healthy version, I used quinoa instead of making fried tortillas. If you would like to make them, in a separate pot put 1/2 cup of olive oil and gently fry strips of tortillas, turning them once – til they are just slightly browned. Put them aside on a piece of paper towel.
When the soup is ready add 400g of cubed fresh organic chicken breast and gently poach it in the soup for about 5 min and then add the cilantro and lime juice. Serve the soup with fresh avocado bites, freshly grated cheese and the fried tacos.
So while writing this post the sun has come out and it is the most beautiful day! I’m wondering, if writing blog posts about warm hearty soups to comfort the soul on a rainy day, works in the same way as every time you remember to wear your gumboots and to bring your umbrella – the sun is sure to shine?
I am off to enjoy a green smoothie in the sunshine!