If anyone were to look at the cell phone call records for my Mom, Sister and I they would see that we talk to each other a ridiculous number of minutes each day. There are days my sister and I have already chatted for 1/2 an hour before she goes into work at 7am. In full disclosure she's in central time zone - she knows better than to expect me to be conversational before 6:30am! I don't even know what we talk about most of the time, but food, awesome things we have cooked, and trying to figure out what to make for dinner that day are definitely common topics!
When I mentioned to my Mom earlier this evening I was planning to use Sweet Italian chicken sausage in a chicken tortilla soup for dinner, I could hear the hesitation in her voice. My Mama is an AMAZING cook, but she is mostly a 'play it safe' recipe follower. Since I am definitely NOT all about accurate measurements, recipes or rule following, I tend to stress her out with my cooking adventures! It almost always turns out edible, right Mom?!
Part of the fun of eating seasonally, locally, based on what meat we have in the freezer, and living far from the grocery store is coming up with meals using what we have on hand. So far, I basically fail at meal planning so I've gotten pretty good at keeping pantry staples stocked so I can throw things together into a meal.
I found a winner with this recipe tonight! E baby proclaimed multiple times "good stoup mama!" as she stuffed food in her mouth. And no, that's not a typo. Soup is "stoup" in Eliza language. It's pretty adorable and I hope she never stops. She called strawberries "streebies" for the longest time and I am so so sad she has grown out of it!
Chicken Sausage Tortilla "Stoup"
- 1+ pounds Chicken Sausage (Sweet Italian, Chipotle or Tomato Basil would all be delish!)
- 1 onion chopped
- 1-2 cups of bell peppers chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 box or about 4 cups of chicken broth
- 1 can of black beans, rinsed
- 1 can of corn, drained
- 1 can of diced tomatoes with chiles or 2 fresh tomatoes and a hot pepper, diced
- Handful of cilantro, chopped
- salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, chili powder, cumin, tumeric (or a couple tablespoons of taco seasoning) to taste
- Splash or two of lime juice
- Avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips or strips, slices jalapenos, etc. as toppings
Add chicken sausage, onion, peppers and garlic along with 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a dutch oven or large soup pot. Crumble chicken sausage into small pieces with burner on medium heat until cooked through. Add remaining ingredients and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes. Taste test and add spices until you're happy with it. Start with a 1/2 teaspoon or so of each and add from there. Toss in a couple splashes of lime juice and that's it! Top with whatever sounds good and enjoy!
I think this would also be good served with rice, or with rice cooked in the soup.... might try that next time!
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