Chicken and Poblano Soup
A flavorful stock is the base for this smoky pepper, chicken and potato soup. Make a second batch and freeze it for another night’s meal!
For the poached chicken:
- 3 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
- 2 ribs celery, quartered
- 1 onion, peeled and halved
- 2 carrots, peeled and quartered
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 lime, sliced
For the soup:
- 6 large poblano peppers
- 1 large red bell pepper
- 2 large starchy potatoes, peeled and cubed (1 1/2-2 pounds)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- 2 ears corn on the cob or 1 cup defrosted kernels
- 1 Fresno or jalapeño pepper, finely chopped (optional)
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 palmful ground coriander (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)
- 1/2 palmful ground cumin (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)
- Salt and pepper
- Garnishes: lime wedges, unsalted lightly crushed blue corn tortilla chips, freshly chopped cilantro (optional)
- In large soup pot, cover the chicken and poaching ingredients with about 2 1/2-3 quarts water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Simmer and poach for 1 hour. Remove the chicken breasts to a plate to cool. Peel and remove the bones from the chicken and slice the breast meat. Strain the poaching liquid and reserve.
- Pre-heat the broiler. Place the poblano and red bell peppers on a baking sheet and char evenly to blacken the skins all over – leave the oven door slightly ajar to allow the steam to escape. Place the peppers in a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap to steam the peppers and loosen the flesh from the skin.
- In a small pot, cover the potatoes with water and bring to a boil. Salt the water and cook the potatoes until very soft. Drain the potatoes and mash with some of the reserved poaching liquid until very smooth.
- Peel and seed the peppers. Dice the red bell pepper and coarsely chop the poblanos. Add the peppers to a food processor and puree with a little stock until smooth. Stir the pepper puree into the potatoes until very smooth and well-combined.
- In the poaching pot, heat the EVOO. Add the corn, garlic, Fresno pepper or jalapeño pepper, if using, coriander and cumin and stir for a few minutes over medium-high heat. Add the potatoes and thin the soup to your desired consistency with the reserved poaching liquid. Add the chicken and cook to warm the meat through.
- Serve the soup in bowls topped with cilantro for garnish, if desired, along with wedges of lime to squeeze over top and tortilla chips alongside.