1 large dried Pasilla Negro Chile, stemmed and seeded
1 carton Mutti Italian Chopped Tomatoes
2 tablespoons Planeta Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Trapani Sea Salt
1 medium white onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick
3 garlic cloves, peeled
2 quarts Organic Vegetable Broth
1 large epazote sprig, if you have one
4 (about 1 1/4 pounds total) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 large ripe avocado, pitted, flesh scooped from the skin and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded Mexican melting cheese (like Chihuahua, quesadilla or asadero) or Monterey Jack, brick or mild cheddar
A generous 4 cups (about 6 ounces) roughly broken tortilla chips
1/2 cup Mexican crema, sour cream or creme fraîche for garnish
1 large lime, cut into 6 wedges, for serving
Quickly toast the Pasilla Negro Chile by turning it an inch or two above an open flame for a few seconds until its aroma fills the kitchen. (Lacking an open flame, toast it in a dry pan over medium heat, pressing it flat for a few seconds, then flipping it over and pressing it again.) Break the Pasilla Negro Chile into pieces and put in a blender jar along with the Mutti Italian Chopped Tomatoes with their juice. (A food processor will work, though it won’t completely puree the chile.)
Heat the Planeta Extra Virgin Olive Oil in a medium (4-quart) saucepan over medium-high. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, about 7 minutes. Scoop up the onion and garlic with a slotted spoon, pressing them against the side of the pan to leave behind as much oil as possible, and transfer to the blender. Process until smooth.
Return the pan to medium-high heat. When quite hot, add the puree and stir nearly constantly, until thickened to the consistency of tomato paste, about 6 minutes. Add the Vegetable Broth and epazote, if using. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and season with Trapani Sea Salt, usually about a generous teaspoon (depending on the saltiness of the broth).
Just before serving, add the chicken to the simmering Vegetable Broth. Divide the avocado, cheese and tortilla chips between serving bowls. When the chicken is done, usually about 5 minutes, ladle the soup into the bowls. Garnish with the crema and a slice of lime.
Recipe adapted from www.rickbayless.com
Photo courtesy of www.eatthebestfoodintheworld.com