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1. In a 6-quart Dutch oven combine water, chicken, onion, 1/2 cup chopped carrot, the celery, 8 cilantro sprigs, the cumin, chili powder, ancho chile pepper, oregano, and bay leaves. Bring to a boiling, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until the chicken is very tender, 1 to 1-1/2 hours.
2. Meanwhile, heat 1/2 inch of corn oil in a large heavy saucepan to 375 degrees F. Add tortilla strips, about one-fourth at a time, and cook until crispy and light golden, 30 to 60 seconds. Remove from saucepan with a slotted spoon. Drain strips on paper towels. Season with salt.
3. Using tongs, remove chicken from liquid; cool chicken. Strain remaining liquid, and discard solids. Return to Dutch oven along with chicken broth. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
4. Remove meat from bones and discard bones. Tear chicken in 1-inch pieces. Add to broth along with the 2 sliced carrots. Simmer for 3 minutes. Add the sugar snap peas, zucchini, tomato, and jalapeno. Simmer 3 minutes or until tender. Taste and season with salt and black pepper.
5. ladle soup into bowls. Top with cheddar cheese, tortilla strips, and cilantro. Makes 6 to 8 servings.