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Black Tie Affairs' Roasted Anaheim Chicken Soup

Light Roux:
2/3 C. shortening or lard
2/3 C. flour

2 quarts (8 C.) rich chicken stock
1 lb. cream cheese, at room temperature
1 C. heavy whipping cream, at room temperature
1 large sweet onion, sliced
1 T. chopped fresh garlic
olive oil
6 Anaheim peppers (or poblano peppers), stems and seeds removed, roasted, peeled and cut into strips
1 red bell pepper, stem and seeds removed, roasted, peeled and cut into strips
1 yellow bell pepper, stem and seeds removed, roasted, peeled and cut into strips
1 lb. grilled or smoked chicken breast, cut into bite-size chunks 1 cup whole-kernel corn, cooked
1 well-rounded t. ground cumin, or to taste
1/2 well-rounded t. black pepper, or to taste
1 T. dried thyme
2 bay leaves
3 dashes Worcestershire sauce, or to taste
3 dashes Tabasco sauce, or to taste
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Melt shortening in small heavy saucepan over moderate heat, add flour, and stir until flour is incorporated. Cook, stirring occasionally, until shortening and flour foam together, about 2-3 minutes. Do not allow the roux to brown. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring chicken stock to a simmer. In a food processor, blend cream cheese and heavy cream until smooth. Slowly add roux to chicken stock and whisk until smooth. Add cream cheese mixture and whisk until smooth. At this point you will have a very strong (almost too salty) creamy chicken stock. Do not continue to use a wire whisk. Start using a spoon. This will prevent the vegetables in the soup from breaking up. Sauté the onions and garlic in a little olive oil over moderate heat for 5-6 minutes or until soft, then add to soup. Add Anaheim, red and yellow pepper strips. Add chicken and corn. Stir in cumin, black pepper, thyme, bay leaves, Worcestershire and Tabasco and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Stir in cilantro and serve.

Note: Recipe can be halved or doubled.

The consistency of this soup should be almost like a chowder. If it is too thin, dissolve a few teaspoons of cornstarch with an equal amount of water. Stir into hot soup until desired thickness is achieved.

Makes about 16 cups.

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