Caldo Tlalpeño (Chicken, Chickpea & Chipotle Soup)

Caldo Tlalpeño
The history of the Tlalpeño soup says that in Mexico in the early 1900’s in the village of Tlalpan there were tram stops where food was sold. Among the sellers there was a lady who prepared her own chicken broth recipe.

This recipe started to be liked by people and they named it Tlalpan soup… With the passage of time, the name morphed into Tlalpeño soup. My cousin Ofelia is always talking about how tasty this soup is, so I finally remembered to make some! It is especially tasty with the fresh veggies, chipotle and chickpeas.

Yields up to 6 hearty servings

Ingredients:

For the Broth Base:
4 chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
6 cups water
2 bay leaves
5 cloves garlic
½ tablespoon peppercorns
2 chile de arbol or 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons salt

To Complete the Soup:
4 Roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 chipotle peppers in adobo
1 serrano pepper, chopped (optional)
1 small white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 cup water
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon dried epazote
1 teaspoon oregano
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 cups chicken broth from cooked chicken
2 bay leaves
3 large carrots, peeled and sliced
½ pound fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
1½ cups chickpeas (I added 2 cups)
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 3 cups)

For the Garnishes:
1 avocado, diced
6 ounces panela cheese, diced (can also use queso fresco or Monterey jack)
Cilantro, chopped
Lime wedges
Diced onion, optional

Caldo Tlalpeño

Directions:

1. In a large pot, add the chicken, bay leaves, peppercorns, red pepper flakes (or chile de arbol), and salt. Cover with 6 cups water and bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, cover and cook for a good 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the chicken and strain the broth, set aside.

2. In the blender, combine the Roma tomatoes, water, chipotles, serrano pepper (if using), onion, garlic, epazote, oregano, 1 cup water, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, taste for salt, set aside.

3. In a large pot, preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium/high heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the tomato mixture from blender, bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook for 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth, stir well to combine, taste for salt. Remove all the meat from the chicken thighs and add it to the soup.

4. Add carrots, green beans, chickpeas and bay leaves to the pot. Cook just until carrots soften, then add the zucchini and cook for another 15 minutes; taste for salt. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with avocado, panela cheese, cilantro, lime and diced onion if using. Serve with warm corn tortillas or tostadas.

 

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