Super Salsa Soup (Sibilance be damned)

THIS is what is sitting in my backyard. “Stack me in the woodpile” it begs, “I’m far too unsightly jumbled in this mess.” And the woodpile is absolutely right. Our gate is wide open right now, lurched nearly off of it’s hinges by this mass of fire fodder. Ragamuffin strays jut into the alley and threaten to upend passer-byes too intent on the ice to notice a rogue log. It’ll take me a week at least to get this moved to where it needs to go.

Luckily I have a secret weapon, super salsa soup! It is meaty, hearty, thick and comes with a full serving of attitude. I don’t usually make this recipe the same twice (I’ve mentioned before how much I detest following instructions) but for your sake, dear reader, I will submit and forever seal this recipe with the written word. A staple in our house, a batch of soup doesn’t last more than two days which means either I double up the recipe or get really fast at stacking wood.

Super Salsa Soup

Dice the following:

 1 onion

3 cloves of garlic

1/2 green pepper

Put the onion and peppers in a large saucepan with 2 Tbsp oil and heat on medium until they have softened (about 4 minutes), then add the garlic and throw in:

1 Tbsp oregano

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp garlic salt

When the seasonings have infused themselves with the savories, pour in:

2 c. salsa

4 c. chicken stock

1/2 c. rice (barley is also good)

1 can rinsed black beans

1/2 c. frozen corn

2 small chopped carrots

1 chicken breast- cubed

4 mild pepperoni sticks (honey garlic is really nice)

Let these magnificent ingredients get to know each other for about 1/2 hour and then serve poured over a dollop of cream cheese. If you really want to impress someone add multi-grain cheese toast wedges and top with shredded cheddar.

The woodpile just said, “Ai Caramba!”

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