Cheese & Cilantro Tortilla Soup
|6 inch corn tortillas||8 , preferably day old|
|Ripe tomatoes||2 Large, peeled, seeded|
|Coarsely chopped white onion||160 Milliliter (2/3 Cup)|
|Garlic clove||1 Large|
|Lard/Vegetable oil||1 Tablespoon|
|Chicken stock/Chicken broth||1750 Milliliter (7 Cups)|
|Coriander sprigs||4 (Fresh)|
|Fresh mint sprigs||3|
|Salt||1 Teaspoon (5 Milliliter)|
|Dried pasilla chilies||5|
|Queso chihuahua cheese/Monterey jack cheese||5 Ounce, cut into 1/2 inch cubes|
|Coarsely chopped fresh cilantro||60 Milliliter (1/4 Cup, Coriander)|
1. Stack tortillas; cut into 1/2 inch (1.3-cm) wide strips. Spread loosely on wire rack; let stand 1 or 2 hours to dry slightly.
2. Combine tomatoes, onion and garlic in blender container; process until smooth. Heat 3 tablespoons (45 mL) lard in 3-quart (3-L) saucepan over medium heat until hot. Add tomato mixture; cook, stirring frequently, 10 minutes.
3. Add stock and coriander sprigs to pan; heat over high heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; simmer 20 minutes. Add mint and salt; simmer 10 minutes longer. Remove and discard coriander and mint sprigs; keep soup hot, covered.
4. Melt enough lard in heavy, large skillet for 1/2 inch (1.3-cm) depth. Heat to 375°F (190°C); adjust heat to maintain temperature.
5. Fry 1/2 tortilla strips at a time in lard, turning occasionally, until crisp, about 1 minute. Remove with slotted spoon; drain on paper toweling.
6. Fry chilies in lard, turning occasionally, until puffed and crisp, about 30 seconds. Do not let chilies burn. Drain on paper toweling. Cool slightly. Crumble chilies coarsely.
7. Ladle soup into bowls; pass chilies, tortilla strips, cheese and chopped coriander to be added according to individual taste.