Yucatecan lime soup: Sopa de lima

articles Food & Cuisine Recipes

Karen Hursh Graber

This specialty of the Yucatan, although it comes from a warm climate, is great winter comfort food. The variety of lime called Citrus Limetta grows in abundance in the Yucatan, although other varieties of limes can be used in making this soup. In Mexico, this lime is called limón, or lemon, but the small, tangy fruit resembles the tart key lime that flourishes in Florida.


For the broth:

  • 1 whole chicken, cut up, or 2 whole chicken breasts
  • 10 cups water
  • 2 sprigs of fresh oregano or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 3 large garlic cloves, peeled and halved
  • 1 medium white onion, quartered
  • 4 whole allspice
  • salt to taste

For the soup:

  • 2 tablespoons corn oil
  • 1 medium white onion, peeled and chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, roasted, then peeled and pureed
  • 2 roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 serrano chiles, seeded and chopped, or 1 green bell pepper, chopped, for a milder taste
  • 6 limes, sliced
  • 6 corn tortillas, cut into Frito-size strips, fried and drained on paper towels

Make the broth by placing the chicken in a large stockpot or saucepan with the water, oregano, garlic, onion, allspice and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, skim, and simmer, covered, 45 minutes. Cool, strain and set aside. Shred the chicken meat and set aside.

In a medium-size saucepan, heat the oil and add the onion, roasted garlic, tomatoes and chiles or bell pepper and saute over medium heat until the vegetables are soft.

Add the strained broth and half the lime slices and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the rest of the lime slices and the shredded chicken.

Serve immediately, accompanied by fried tortilla strips, to be added by each diner.

Serves 6.

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Published or Updated on: January 1, 2009 by Karen Hursh Graber © 2009
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