My Crock Pot Obsession

When I was in my early twenties and setting up my first apartment, my mother tried to give me a crock pot. I turned it down thinking it was outré to have one in my kitchen. I was an up and coming career girl! What use was a crock pot to fabulous me?  What a silly, silly girl I was. Last summer we moved into a wonderful new home. Someone (I swear it wasn’t me) had the brilliant idea that we upgrade our gas cook top to a professional slide in range. You know those stainless steel behemoths that you can prepare dinner for one hundred on? We imagined all of the gourmet meals we’d cook on our new gas range. Our friends would be so jealous *smirk*! Six weeks and three failed gas line and hood inspections later, we still couldn’t use our fancy stove.  I was cooking with our plug in skillet or we were eating out. We were still weeks away from approval of our new 1200 cfm hood (a hood, BTW, so powerful that it threatened to suck my poor child into the grill if he happened to toddle by – but that’s another blog). I had to do something. The next day I ran out and bought a crock pot. I remembered my mom used hers all the time when we were growing up. I love to cook and experiment with recipes so I rummaged around and pulled this spicy soup together. It’s a riff on a recipe my company’s dining room chef prepares and it’s one of my husband’s favorites:

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken Tortilla Soup (a la Boss Mom)

1 large Rotisserie Chicken
2-3 tbsp of Extra virgin olive oil for sautéing and drizzle during simmering
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic (or more if you wish)
1 large bunch of cilantro washed and dried
1 packet of hot taco seasoning
2 tbsp of chili powder
1 tsp of cumin
3 15oz cans of fire-roasted tomatoes with liquid
3 cartons (about 9 cups) of chicken broth (low-sodium is okay)
2 cup of shredded carrots
2 cups of chopped celery
salt and pepper to taste
1 small jalapeno pepper (remove seeds to decrease the heat)
2 large cans of sweet corn
½ cup of fresh lime juice

Chop the onions and garlic and sauté in olive oil. Add in celery and sauté mixture until translucent. Transfer to crock pot. Add chicken broth and tomatoes along with taco seasoning, chili powder and cumin. Pull chicken off the bone, discarding skin, and add to soup mixture. Stir gently until all ingredients are well combined. Simmer on high for about 20 -30 minutes. Add corn and carrots and season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir gently. Simmer on low for 1 hour stirring occasionally. To finish, stir in lime juice, chopped cilantro and drizzle with more olive oil. Serve topped with baked or fried tortilla strips. Makes about 10-12 servings. Serve with a cold beer or a hearty red wine and enjoy!

Now that winter’s here I use my crock pot all of the time for chili, stews, short ribs and vegetable soups. I throw everything in the crock pot the night before and the next morning I have a gorgeous one-pot meal ready for that night’s dinner. Sometimes mother does know best.

Leave a Comment

Want to contact me?

Send me an email and I'll be in touch.