Holidays & Special Occasions Halloween Tombstone Tortilla Chicken Soup

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      2 T. vegetable oil
      6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch crosswise strips
      3 medium onions, cut in half, thinly sliced
      2 stalks of celery, trimmed, diced
      2 medium cloves garlic, minced
      3 (14 1/2 oz.) cans chicken broth
      1 C. water
      1 (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes, drained
      1 (7 oz.) can mild chilies, such as Ortega
      2 (11 oz.) cans corn kernels
      2 t.

      ground cumin
      2 t. chili powder
      6 corn tortillas, cut into 1-inch strips
      Salt and pepper to taste
      Garnish: Sour cream
      Garnish: Tortilla chips
      Garnish: Tortillas for making tombstones
      Garnish: Sprigs of cilantro
      Optional garnish: Minced pickled jalapeno chilies

      Heat oil in large, heavy-bottom pot or Dutch oven. Add chicken thigh strips and brown on both sides. Remove chicken with slotted spoon or slotted spatula, leaving oil in pan; place chicken in bowl.

      Add onions and celery; cook, stirring frequently, until onions start to turn golden brown. Add garlic; cook 1 minute.

      Add chicken, chicken broth, water, tomatoes, chilies, corn, cumin and chili powder. Bring to boil; reduce temperature to simmer. Simmer 45 minutes.

      Stir in tortillas; simmer 3 minutes. Taste; add salt and pepper, as needed.

      Presentation:
      Ladle into soup bowls. Garnish each with spoonful of sour cream, 2 or 3 tortilla chips and sprigs of cilantro. Put out small bowl of minced pickled jalapeno chilies, if desired; those who want spicier mixtures can add a little to their soup.
      To make tombstones.

      Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray baking sheet with olive oil nonstick cooking spray. Using 3-inch Halloween cookie cutters, cut tortillas, one at a time, into shapes.

      Discard scraps.

      Lightly spray tortilla shapes with cooking spray. Place on prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with salt. Bake 5 to 7 minutes or until edges begin to brown.

      Remove to wire rack to cool completely.

      Yield: 6 – 8 servings

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Holidays & Special Occasions Halloween Tombstone Tortilla Chicken Soup