When my mom sent me this recipe, I was excited to try it. I love Mexican flavors and tortilla soup, and though Mom couldn’t remember where the recipe came from, she highly recommended it for something new. Considering that it is a bit more work than opening a can of tortilla soup, I hoped it would be good.
I prepared the meatballs a few hours ahead of time to make assembling the soup easier. (Doing so isn’t necessary, but can help if you are crunched for time right around dinner.) You can choose ground pork or turkey; I picked ground turkey breast because it is much leaner than ground turkey. Seriously, look at the nutrition facts; because ground turkey contains both white and dark meat, it contains much more fat. No matter what kind of ground meat you choose, take care not to overwork it. Use your hands to mix the ingredients and shape the meatballs, but try not to spend too much time kneading the meat, as it can become tough.
Be sure to taste your soup before serving to make sure your spices taste right. Be warned up front—chipotle chilies in adobo sauce bring some serious heat. I thought, if two is good, four is better! Mistake. Overdoing the chipotles—which, remember, are jalapenos—just about blew my head off. Lesson learned. Serve alongside warm tortillas, some fresh bread, or even cornbread. Enjoy!
½ cup masa harina, breadcrumbs, or cornmeal
1 lb lean ground pork or ground white turkey breast
½ yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon oregano
2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
½ teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon cumin
1 or 2 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
Fresh lime juice
Chopped cilantro, optional
Mix together meatball ingredients with hands; roll into one-inch meatballs. Set aside.
In a large Dutch oven, heat oil; sauté 1 onion about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for another minute or so. Add cumin and chipotle, chicken broth, and diced tomatoes. Bring to a simmer. Carefully drop in the meatballs and return the soup to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and allow the soup to simmer without stirring until meatballs are firm, 15-20 minutes. When meatballs are cooked through, taste the soup for seasonings.
To serve, squeeze fresh lime juice over each bowl, sprinkle with cilantro, and serve with warm tortillas.