heat some extra virgin olive oil in your magical soup pot while you cut up:
1 small bunch carrots
2 large cloves garlic
add these to the pot as you are finished cutting them and allow them to cook on med heat so they are softening slowly (i like to add some salt at this point too – just enough to bring out the flavor of these veggies). the time spent on this will be the base of the flavor of your soup. less time will be a lighter flavor and longer will be a heartier flavor. once the veggies are on their way to cooked add:
1.25 lb ground pork (if vegetarian i’d also love this soup with garbanzo beans or red lentils just add them at the appropriate time).
give this time to start browning and add:
1 heaping tablespoon cumin
1 heaping tablespoon chili powder
2 pinches red pepper flakes
continue cooking until pork is cooked through. now add about 1/2 cup of chicken broth let it come up to a boil and use it to deglaze your pot. once done deglazing add:
2.5 -3.5 cups chicken broth
2 bay leaves
approximate 28 oz. whole peeled tomatoes
let this simmer on the stove for a bit (30 mins – over an hour).
now roughly chop about 1/2 bunch of cilantro and add it to the hop soup. simmer another 10 -20 mins.
soup is ready! but what is soup without toppings?
ladle soup into your bowl of choice and top with:
more fresh cilantro
a healthy squeeze of fresh lime juice
1/2 of a diced avocado
a small crumble of goat cheese
eat, drink, and be merry. happy 2012 :)