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Carron

May 18, 2005, 8:06 AM

Post #1 of 12 (2798 views)

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Sopa de Tortillas???

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Last week one of my daughters took me out for lunch at a pretty new hacienda-style restaurant here in Cd. Acuna. The menu was heavy on Tex-Mex offerings such as cheese enchiladas with rice and refried beans, washed down with pitchers full of margaritas.

But a very sophisticated couple came in as we were finishing and after looking over the menu, the woman consulted with the waiter. Soon he returned with a cereal bowl filled with what appeared to be toasted tortilla strips and nothing else. No condiments such as limes, cilantro, chopped chiles, radishes, or shredded cabbage and avocado cubes. He then produced a pitcher of steaming hot liquid which he poured over the tortilla strips with a grand flourish. (I am assuming this was chicken broth.) Lots of drama! From her smiles and nods, the lady enjoyed everything very much.

Was this sopa de tortillas?? If so, it looked too simple to be true. I'm more of a sopa de Azteca girl myself, since that was the premier soup in Chiapas. Has anyone ever seen the soup served this way? It would be great for an at-home party since the tortillas don't get soggy. All I need now is a good recipe, one that will hold up to no other ingredients or condiments.



Esteban

May 18, 2005, 8:38 AM

Post #2 of 12 (2791 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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That sort of reminds me of what is possible in smaller venues all around Mexico. I went to a restaurant in a very small town and the menu was incredible. However, when I ordered, they didn't have what I wanted. I ordered again and again and still, it wasn't available. Finally, I just asked what WAS available.

Now, when I go to small restaurants outside the city, I'll ask what they have without looking at the menu and tell them what I want. About a month ago, we went to a little town, Barron, out near the Maz airport. There is a big palapa beer garden there with several stands serving shrimp and fish. I just asked if they would make up some shrimp tacos even though they normally didn't make them. No problem.....6 pesos each.


Carron

May 19, 2005, 3:30 PM

Post #3 of 12 (2753 views)

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Re: [Esteban] Sopa de Tortillas???

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Good point about asking for something off the menu. When I first moved to Chiapas I made a friend who was about as sophisticated as they come. She was in her early 40's then and had worked in the governor's office since she was 17. She was only 5' tall but looked like a high fashion model in panty hose and high heels, especially compared to her Zoque mother who wasn't more than 4" 5". She couldn't understand why we spent so much money improving our house. Like she said, once you have a roof over your head, spend the rest of your money on make-up and great clothes! She lived in a virtual shack and was a walking example of her philosophy.

Another thing I learned from her was how to order in neighborhood restaurants. She never looked at a menu but instead always asked "Que tienes muy sabrosa?" (Or something similar. My Spanish is still awful.) What do you have that is delicious? Worked every time.


MARIA CUERVA

May 24, 2005, 12:09 PM

Post #4 of 12 (2702 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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I am a Garnish Queen so I won't be giving you advice on simple chicken broth poured over tortillas. I adore Tortilla Soup but make it once in awhile because of all the steps. Ah the essence of alchemy in Mexican cooking. I always prepare everything, set all garnishes on table with the soup bowls, and then when serving pour the soup over the tortillas in bowls. There is no way to save the soup for another day without soggy tortillas. Even if you fry them as I do.


Carron

May 25, 2005, 7:36 AM

Post #5 of 12 (2682 views)

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Re: [cuerva] Sopa de Tortillas???

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Then to add drama to your next soup service, pour the hot broth onto the crispy tortillas from a decorated pitcher held about a foot above the soup bowls and you will surely impress everyone!


song_of_joy

Jun 13, 2005, 9:52 PM

Post #6 of 12 (2626 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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There's a wonderful made-from-scratch recipe for tortilla soup in the Mexconnect recipe section.

I spend a lot of time lost there. Totally absorbed. We love to cook.


pat

Jun 18, 2005, 5:03 PM

Post #7 of 12 (2608 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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"The menu was heavy on Tex-Mex offerings such as cheese enchiladas with rice and refried beans, washed down with pitchers full of margaritas."

drool.... gawd how I miss real Tex-Mex....I have gotten light-headed from the loss of so much grease in my diet. I need a large "combination plate". It's time for a trip to Texas.


Carol Schmidt


Jun 20, 2005, 3:51 PM

Post #8 of 12 (2581 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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If I were to try to pour soup into a bowl a foot below I would surely surprise everyone and have a few dry cleaning and first aid charges to pay as well. I could probably hit a pail. You should have seen me at that childhood game where you try to drop a clothespin into a bottle.

Carol Schmidt


wendy devlin

Jun 22, 2005, 12:00 PM

Post #9 of 12 (2558 views)

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Re: [Carron] Sopa de Tortillas???

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This is how sopa de tortillas is made in the Mexican restaurant where my daughter works in Canada. The owners are from Mexico. Buen provecho!

Sopa de Tortilla (al estilo 'La Casita')

(prepare 1 1/2 cu tomato salsa
(fresh tomatoes, onions, cilantro, jalapeños and salt...cook, cool and blend)

1 1/2 pureed tomato salsa
6-7 cups chicken or vegetable stock
3 cups fried tortilla strips or chips(critical to the taste)
1 avocado cubed
1 1/2 c grated Monterrey jack cheese

Heat stock and salsa together.

Serve into individual dishes and garnish with avocado, cheese and tortilla strips.

Add fresh lime juice as desired.


Carron

Jun 23, 2005, 7:33 AM

Post #10 of 12 (2543 views)

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Re: [wendy devlin] Sopa de Tortillas???

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On weekends our local Soriana sells all kinds of wonderful already prepared foods, including fresh salsa. Here it is called "pico de gallo". I buy a 6 peso pint container every week and use it as you suggested in soups and braises. Also makes a quick and easy salad side dish with meats. Sure beats having to dice all those ingredients by hand!


wendy devlin

Jun 24, 2005, 1:47 PM

Post #11 of 12 (2526 views)

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Re: [Carron] Pico de Gallo???

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Carron,

Last year Rose and I catered a seven course Mexican meal for 120 people.
That's a lot of 'Pico de Gallo', among other things:)

If we could have bought pints of fresh salsa for 6 pesos, we would have!

We hadn't really done such a large dinner of any kind before. This was a community dinner event. The sponsors were paying Rose to organize the event and she also received high-school credit for work-related experience.

The meal was designed for diners to discover the great taste and 'economy' value of cooking Mexican country-style.

We also provide recipes for all seven courses for anyone interested.

There was a helpful team of volunteers so although we did work for eight hours, we didn't have to do all that chopping ourselves.

We also went through all our Mexican memorbilia, and decorated the church hall from floor to ceiling with them plus paper flowers and those paper cut-out thingees(name escapes me) that hang on lines across the street at fiestas, which we made also made ourselves.

Rose was really keen that people hear 'real' Mexican music, all kinds, Norteño, ranchera, mariachi etc. so she made a four-hour CD.

My only reservation...that she not play it at the VOLUME, usually played in Mexico.

Many people wanted us to do another dinner the next month...like Thai, maybe....ja!

P.S. There's still Bread Pudding chapirodada, the one made with cheese and assorted fruits(spelling?) in the bottom of the freezer.

Must remember to haul it out and give the chickens a treat.


Carron

Jun 24, 2005, 2:48 PM

Post #12 of 12 (2520 views)

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Re: [wendy devlin] Pico de Gallo???

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Actually those "paper cut-out thingees" are one of the reasons we decided to move to Mexico. Back in the late 70's we had only 3 pre-teen daughters (2 his, 1 mine) and we were still on our luna de miel.

We had spent several days vacationing in Mexico along the border and were having an early lunch in Piedras Negras, across from Eagle Pass, Texas. In the mercado, where I bought more ollas and cazuelas than Hubby could carry back to the truck, we ate at a lovely little cafe.

All the waiters were dressed in black pants,white dress shirts, and black ties. They acted as though we were in a 5 * restaurant. Our girls demanded something familiar and opted for the grilled cheese basket (I no longer remember what it was called on the menu). When the sandwiches arrived, each was in a plastic basket with a cut-out paper liner and a super order of french fries. Not your regular fast food presentation!
 
 
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