Prep time: 35 minutes
Cook time: 5 to 6 hours and 15 minutes
Lisa Brown of Fresno shares this recipe that she says is outstanding. She found it in The Fresno Bee in 1999 and has made it about 100 times. She frequently uses the C&W Ultimate Southwest Blend Frozen Vegetable Mix (corn, black beans, poblano peppers, roasted onions, red peppers) instead of the frozen corn.
6 chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
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1 15-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 fresh jalapeño, seeded and chopped (wear gloves)
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 cups water
2 10½-ounce cans double-strength chicken broth, undiluted
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
10 ounces frozen corn, thawed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
4 corn tortillas
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Salsa, chopped avocado, grated Monterey Jack cheese, lime wedges
In large skillet over medium-high heat, cook chicken thighs, skin side down, until skin is golden brown, about three minutes. Do not turn chicken. Transfer chicken to slow cooker and discard fat in skillet.
In a food processor or blender, purée the tomatoes with their juice, onion, jalapeño and garlic. Add to the skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until slightly thickened, about three minutes. Add the tomato mixture, water, chicken broth, cumin, salt, pepper and bay leaf to the slow cooker and stir well.
Cover and slow cook until the chicken thighs are tender, five to six hours. Remove the chicken and cool slightly. When cool enough to handle, discard the skin and remove the meat from the bones. Discard bones. Coarsely chop the chicken and return to the slow cooker. Stir in the corn and cilantro and cover.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with oil and cut into strips about 2 inches long and ½ inch wide. Spread strips on baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, until crisp and just brown, about five to eight minutes.
Remove bay leaf from soup. Serve in individual bowls topped with tortilla strips and a dollop of salsa, avocado and cheese. Serve with lime wedges.
Per serving, based on 6 servings: 302 calories; 30 grams protein; 24 grams carbohydrates; 10 grams fat (3 saturated, 3 monounsaturated, 4 polyunsaturated); 112 milligrams cholesterol; 1,075 milligrams sodium; 3 grams fiber; 4 grams sugar; 30 percent calories from fat.