Tag Archives: Avo

Chicken Tortilla Soup and a Whole Bunch More!

It is a soup sorta day don’t you all think?

Although today wasn’t all that cold. But it still felt like the day to enjoy a Mexican inspired meal.

Today started off with a somewhat cool morning and ended with bright sunshine and warmth. The high of the day was about twenty-two degrees centigrade. Can you believe that tomorrow is said to be twenty-seven?! Yeah, both Friday and Saturday is pretty much bikini weather days! The following day however will end up being thirteen degrees.

Kind of sounds like April in the Netherlands.

Not been to the Netherlands in April? Well around the end of the month right around Koningsdag (King’s Day), we get like three days of really nice and hot weather. It goes up to thirty a lot of the time. Only thing is that the days before that it is like sixteen degrees and the days afterwards it is like nineteen degrees. Both pre and post Koningsdag are rainy days while during it is perfectly wonderful.

That honestly is like it is to be this week. It is even rumoured that we are going to have snow this coming Tuesday!

Speaking of snow and cold, a woman told me something very very interesting today!

The more berries on a tree, the more severe the winter will be!

What tree you may ask? Not a mulberry tree, but a Mountain Ash tree!

Mountain Ash Tree

Apparently the Mountain Ash trees are very much covered right now. So all this talk that it will be an Il Niño type of winter doesn’t seem t actually apply. Or does it? Can one actually tell the forecast for the upcoming winter?

To be or not to be a warm winter, that is the question.

Well back to my soup! Sorry for blabbing on about everything else but the food!

So I made a very simple and quick Chicken Tortilla soup. I’m someone who has made a good few of these soups and thought I would try for this one. I definitely saw why it was a twenty minute soup! I also saw that I am lacking some serious herbs and spices in my kitchen. I mean I have a whole bunch of them but I am missing two of the most critical types of spices!

  • Chilli powder
  • Red pepper flakes

How do I not have these for a soup such as this one is beyond me!

I got the recipe from Nutritionist in the Kitch, the direct link for the recipe can be found here. I added a few more ingredients that I feel really needs to be in every tortilla soup. I also removed a few ingredients.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 breast of chicken (283g), cooked and shredded
  • 1 medium yellow onion (150g), chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper (175g), chopped
  • 1 small jalepeño, sliced and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika powder
  • 1 can (398ml) stewed diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups (940ml) chicken broth
  • 1 can (398ml) red kidney beans
  • 1 can (199ml) corn
  • 1/3 cup (15g) cilantro, chopped
  • ½ avocado, sliced
  • 1 lime, quartered and squirted in each bowl (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small tortilla, sliced

Instructions:

  • In a large deep pot, sauté garlic, onion, bell pepper, and jalepeño in olive oil until soft and fragrant.

  • Add stewed tomatoes to vegetables and mix. Add cumin and paprika powder. Mix well before adding chicken broth to the tomato mixture. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer for five minutes.

  • Now add shredded chicken, kidney beans, and corn and reduce heat and allow to boil onwards for five minutes.

  • While soup is simmering, in a small frying pan heat oil up and fry tortillas until chip-like in consistency.

  • Stir through cilantro and ladle into individual bowls.

  • Top with three strips of the tortilla chips, top with several cilantro leaves, and top that with three slices of avocado. Now squirt some lime juice into soup if doing that.

  • Enjoy!

I love love love this sort of soup. But I love anything with shredded chicken such as a normal chicken soup, an arepa, an epanada, avocado chicken salad, etc. Love it all.

Anyway, I ended up enjoying the soup with a very cool and almost luminescent looking juice! One of the best things about being in North America are having those frozen Minute Maid juices! Like this one!

Almost Glowing juice
Almost Glowing juice

And to go with this Limeade I am also enjoying this Limoncello scented hand cream. I now live in a very dry part of the world (however Johannesburg was also very dry), and I am in constant need of creaming my hands. I recently went to Bath & Body Works and bought about three hand creams for just $12. So beside every sink in my apartment (and luckily there’s only three) I have one of these cream bottles to soften your hands up! This is the one I have in my personal washroom.

Limoncello Hand cream
Limoncello Hand cream

By the way, this Limoncello hand cream smells A MILLION times better than the actual Limoncello liquour. A couple years ago I tried to make a Limoncello cocktail for my little sister and I and well…. it tasted much worse than medicine generally tastes! Blegh!

And before I am done, have you all heard of the amazing story that archaeologists found the another humanoid creature that may change history as we know it? They found it just outside of Johannesburg in a cave! This creature being part Neanderthal and part cro-magnon! While watching the news they said that these humanoids had long hands like ours, however instead of being straight in length like ours, they were longer and curved to be able to climb! How cool is that!

I am just amazed by all that is discovered in this fantastic world we live in.

Anyway I am so sorry for just going on and on like crazy today.

Guess I had just so much to say! Hope you all have a fabulous rest of the day and enjoy your meal!

Happy eating… and learning!

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Flu-Fighting and Air Way Opening Soup

The cold and flu season comes at the two worst times of the year: during the winter time and before a long flight overseas. Thing is the flight could be at any time of year and even more than once, it depends on how much you fly.

As it is not winter time in South Africa, I definitely have a long haul flight that I have to take. And you know what? I developed some sniffles earlier in the week. So I thought a soup would be the best way to cure my illness. Plus we all know that Grandma’s Chicken Noodle Soup has always been the way to cure any cold or flu.

Although a chicken soup is a great way to diminish any trace of a bug in your body, there are other great tools to ensuring you come out perfectly healthy! Epicurious has a list of six ingredients that should be in your flue fighting diet, the link for that is here.

So although I love a good chicken soup to fight any illness, I don’t ever go for the boring old chicken soup you get in a package, I like to spice it up. Literally. Mexican infused soup with a good kick makes it all that much better. I mean you get the chicken to fight the power, and chili to open your airways. Pretty perfect if you ask me!

Chicken and Rice Soup

I got the recipe from Food.com though the direct link to the recipe can be found here. Lately I’ve been thinking about chicken rice soup. Not chicken noodle, but rice. And I remember mom used to make chicken rice soup when my sister and I were kids. I remember hating it though. The faces I would make in our small kitchen in Ciudad Ojeda was pretty ridiculous. Especially with how I just made a chicken and rice soup right now. No idea why I wasn’t fond of the soup before because I quite like it today!

Chicken and Rice soup
Mom’s Plate, with Avo on the Side

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups (1,410ml) chicken stock
  • ½ cup (97.5g) white basmati
  • 1 cup (235ml) water
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup (200g) tomatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • ½ cup (75g) onion, chopped thinly
  • ½ jalepeño, sliced and chopped
  • 1 cup (125g) chicken breast, shredded
  • ¼ cup (59ml) lime juice
  • ½ cup (15g) cilantro, chopped
  • ½ avocado, sliced (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a small pot, bring water to boil, once boiling add rice and turn heat to low and allow rice to simmer with lid on pot for 15 minutes.

  2. In a separate pot (a large one), bring chicken stock to boil. Once boiling turn heat down and allow to simmer.

  3. Finally in a small pan, fry chicken with salt and pepper seasoning until brown. Remove from pan once cooked and set aside. In same pan add olive oil and sauté onion and jalepeño for a minute until fragrant. Then remove from heat.

  4. Chicken should be able to be handled now, so shred chicken and set aside.

  5. Begin to fill bowl in these steps: 

    Solids in Soup before Broth
    Solids in Soup before Broth
    1. Rice
    2. Onion/jalepeño mixture
    3. Tomato
    4. Cilantro
    5. Chicken
    6. Chicken stock
    7. Lime juice (only a teaspoon or more if desired)
    8. Avocado
  6. Serve and enjoy!

Chicken and Rice Soup
Chicken and Rice soup with Avo

Chicken and Rice SoupThis was absolutely fantastic! Although I did completely forget about the lime juice, but with cilantro and jalepeño, who needs lime?

I loved this. Truly did. It was the right amount of kick to open up our airways and fight the illness that made its way into my body.

The thing about flying with a cold or flu is that you could be quarantined as a threat for having Ebola. And that isn’t even a lie. If I am flying from South Africa to Europe (which I will be) there is a big threat that anyone with a fever could have Ebola. That is something NO one wants. Especially when going from one continent to the next.

So a flu-fighting soup was the ultimate way to go.

I think this was a success. Though we will only see for sure tomorrow evening when I hop onto the 11 hour airplane to the Netherlands. My poor body will be in pain after sitting for hours on end!

AND we will go from 32C days to 6C days. Sooo cold. Luckily I’ll have my blanket sweater with me and my two pairs of boots. I’ll definitely be needing lots of tea and coffee from Starbucks to survive the cold.

Anyway, this is my meal for the evening and it was incredible! Chicken with pimiento in a soup is my favourite type of soup. If you end up making this I hope you enjoy it as much as my mother and I did.

Happy eating!

Avo-Avo-Avocado All the Time!

If you like avocado come to South Africa! This country seems to have avocado this and avocado that in every which way you look. Not that I mind as I love avocado, or avo as the locals call it.

My dream is actually to own my own avo plant. I am going through the process of trying to grow one at the moment even! Though it is a very difficult process. You have to get the pit (seed) from your avocado, insert four toothpicks around the pit and emerge half of the pit in a glass of water (ensuring that the point of the pit is facing upwards). You then have to wait a few days for the skin of the pit to fall off and wait up to three weeks until you (MAYBE) see roots sprout from the bottom of the pit. That is when you finally plant your avocado seed to EVENTUALLY (it takes up to 7 years) get your own fruit. Such a long process, eh? And you never know if your pit is good enough until you see roots coming out. Ugh.

Growing an Avocado Tree

Anyway, with avocado being a big thing in this country, I too like to do things with this fruit. So earlier this week I made an avocado hummus! Mmmm mmmmmm!

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup of can (410g) chickpeas, drained
  • ½ large avocado, cubed
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon tahini
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon paprika powder

Instructions:

  1. In a food processor combine all ingredients except paprika powder and blend until smooth.

  2. Place green avocado hummus in a bowl and sprinkle paprika powder on top.

  3. And enjoy!

Eat with chips, on bread, in a pita, or with fresh vegetables. I had mine with mini carrots!

Avo Hummus

It was absolutely wonderful. I ate it so quickly that I could only offer a little to my mom to try. And I got lucky as she wasn’t too keen on it! Instead I just finished the entire Tupperware container myself. Excluding the one bite mom had of it.

The thing about my Avocado Hummus is that there were some chickpea chunks, but I love chickpeas so it didn’t matter much, However if you like your hummus smooth like creamy mashed potatoes then by all means blend until fully smooth and lacking any graininess!

This was a great snack for when you were craving something and would usually eat something unhealthy!

I hope you all enjoy this hummus as much as I did!