Recipe: southwestern style chicken lime soup

Southwestern Style Chicken Lime Soup

1 (3 pound) chicken, cut into pieces
1 large onion, peeled and quartered
8 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 fresh tomatoes, diced
1 large avocado, peeled and diced
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 or 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely chopped
2 limes, quartered

Optional garnish (omit for low fat or low carb)
5 corn tortillas, cut into thin strips and fried in oil or baked until crisp

Serves 6.

Place the chicken pieces in a large pot with enough water to cover plus an extra inch. Add the onion and garlic, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer covered for 90 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat and transfer the chicken pieces to a plate. When they have cooled, remove and discard the skin from the chicken. Remove the meat from the bones and cut or shred it into small pieces. Strain the broth through a sieve and return it to the pot. Skim the fat off the surface of the broth and warm over moderate heat. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Chop tomatoes, avocado and jalapeño. Keep chilled until serving time.

If desired, fry or bake tortilla strips.

To serve, divide the chicken meat between six soup bowls. Squeeze a lime wedge over the chicken then ladle the hot broth over the chicken and serve. Serve the chopped tomatoes, avocado and cilantro on the side, allowing guests to "play with their soup" and add garnishes as they see fit.

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