Paul’s Chocolate-Chipotle Chicken Soup

  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • oil (grape seed, olive, or canola)
  • 3 cloves garlic – minced
  • 1 carrot – sliced
  • 1 stalk celery – sliced
  • salt as needed
  • coarsely ground pepper to taste
  • 4 ounces yellow onion – diced
  • 4 ounces chicken thigh (2 thighs) – skinned, boned, & diced
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (or more to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle (powdered)
  • 4 cups juice from tomatoes PLUS water and/or chicken base
  • 1 1/2  cups chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cups mixed vegetables
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley

Step 1:

Combine 1 tablespoon flour and 1 tablespoon butter to make a roux – golden to light brown. Set aside. (If you do not know how to make a roux, consult Joy of Cooking, page 44.)

Step 2:

Cook garlic, carrot, celery, and onion until sweated, that is cooked in oil (I used grape seed) at a low temperature until just starting to brown. Set aside.

Step 3:

Skin, bone, and dice the chicken (use the skin and bones for stock – brown it in oil, then cover with water and whatever wine you got that is past its prime, a cup or so is good). I try to do the chicken ahead of time. Brown the diced chicken 5-8 minutes in hot oil. In the last minute, add while stirring the dried oregano, cumin, coriander, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and chipotle powder. (Wait 15 minutes after an addition of cocoa powder to taste to determine whether you want more.) Chipotle powder is available from Kevin’s Jelly Bean Store, SASE envelope plus $1.

Step 4:

After browning chicken (or turkey or pork) in the pot and adding herbs and cocoa, get the sweated onion, carrot, celery in the pot whilst stirring, add the roux, keep it stirring, add the warm stock carefully while stirring. Now add one (1) 15-ounce can diced tomatoes and two (2) cups frozen vegetables (corn, black bean, and pepper medley), no broccoli!! Add dried parsley and salt and pepper to taste.

On Sunday, I had no frozen vegetables so I used one (1) can whole kernel corn, one (1) can dark kidney beans, and fresh red bell pepper. I only had one (1) chicken thigh so I used some pork and commercial stock. It worked fine.

It is best to make the soup 12-36 hours ahead and let it marry.

This soup has nice strong flavors that go with any of our Sangiovese-based wines: Sangiovese or Rojo Paradiso or Paradisos Red.

Original recipe: Mexican Chicken Vegetable Soup with Cocoa

From Recipes from the Night Kitchen by Sally Nirenberg; Adapted by: Pat Hanneman 1998-Mar; Servings: 3

  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic — minced
  • salt as needed
  • coarsely ground pepper to taste
  • 1 shallot — diced
  • 4 ounces chicken thigh
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 4 cups juice from tomatoes PLUS water and/or chicken base
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup mixed vegetables
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or to taste

Drain the tomatoes, catching the liquid in a 4 cup measure. Add water to the tomato juice to a level 4 cups. Add 1 1/2 Tsp. concentrated soup base or bouillon. Set aside.

Heat a heavy-bottomed, non-stick soup pot over moderate to low heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring, until lightly brown. Immediately remove the flour from the pan, transferring to a plate to cool.

Heat oil over medium heat in the pan. Add garlic and shallots and cook, until golden, about 10 minutes.

Add the chicken pieces and sauté until done (about 5 to 8 minutes).

Stir in the browned flour, the cumin, and the cocoa, stir to moisten and cook for about 1 minute; do not burn. Add the liquid for the soup very gradually, whisking with each addition. Add vegetables and red pepper flakes and parsley. Bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low simmer for 20 minutes or to taste.

Add fresh cilantro (or fresh parsley), stir, and warm through. Serve.

*** Mexican Vegetable medley includes corn, red and green bell pepper, black beans, celery.



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