Almost Fearless

Tortilla Soup (Sopa de Tortilla)

With the baby came a second delightful change: I could end my pregnancy-induced salt restriction! We had only spent two weeks in Mexico when my ob-gyn had pulled the no-salt card (and later she cut out fat and carbs, it was rough) so I’ve been dying to start cooking again and to try out some real Mexican recipes. I’ve been drooling over this Spanish language cookbook that I picked up here in Mexico:


For my first back-to-normal-food recipe, I knew it had to be tortilla soup, the first dish I had in Mexico and something that beyond being insanely good, it’s actually really easy to make.


– 4 Roma tomatoes

– 1/2 white onion

– 2 cloves of garlic

– 1 cup of oil (for cooking)

– 12 corn tortillas

– 2 dried chiles

– 8 cups chicken broth

– 3 branches of epazote (mexican herb, for garnish which is optional and I skipped)

– 3 avocados cubed

– 1 cup cheese cubed (I used queso panela which has a mozzarella like consistency)

– 1 cup of crema (you could also use sour cream)

– salt and pepper as desired

The first thing is making the soup. You take the tomatoes and onions, rough chop them then throw them in the blender with the garlic and a little bit of water. Puree until smooth. Then mix it with the 4 cups of chicken broth, bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Let it cook for 10 minutes. Done.

Next you need the crunchy tortilla strips to pour your soup over. I took the 12 corn tortillas (I used fresh ones but you can use whatever you like and flour tortillas would work too) and sliced them.

Once you’ve sliced them up, you pour the 1 cup of oil into a frying pan, make it nice and hot (med-high) and through in the strips. They cook in about 2-3 minutes or when they start to turn a little golden brown.

Remove them from the oil and place on a paper towel to absorb an extra oil.

Chop the dried chile as garnish (or if you want this to be a spicier version, you can add fresh chilies to the soup).

That’s it! You’ve just made tortilla soup. Now you assemble your soup. First put your fried tortilla strips into a bowl.

Then toss in some of your cubed cheese.

And avocado. Then you carefully pour in the tomato-onion-chicken broth. Top with crema, dried chiles, epazote (if you have it) and perhaps a few extra tortilla strips.

Yum, so good. The perfect comfort food.

Christine Gilbert

I’ve been dragging my husband around the world since 2008 always with the promise that, “Yes, Drew there will definitely be hammocks there.”



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