When it comes to preparing quick meals, planning ahead makes all the difference. Instead of eating the last of the roast chicken, I like to tuck a portion into the freezer for a rainy day. One large chicken breast could be the makings of a taco dinner for two or a comforting soup, with the help of a little chicken stock.
Hominy is another item that has plenty of applications. The same corn staple used for grits in the south, it’s a versatile ingredient used in hearty Tex-Mex breakfasts and serves as a wonderful addition in Mexican soups and stews. Markets often prefer stocking the jumbo cans, which could mean a lifetime supply—unless you are into menudo. So, when I spot the smaller 12-ounce cans I like to grab one or two for handy use later.
If you happen to have those three ingredients on hand, pat yourself on the back. You have the basis for a tasty soup dinner that’s ready in less than 30 minutes. Zip it up with a heavy squeeze of lime to emulate the flavors of Mexico’s Yucatan; top it freely with a fresh cheese like cojita or a feta and garnish with cilantro or avocado.
Chicken-Lime Soup with Hominy
Inspired by Fine Cooking Make It Tonight
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 white onion, peel and chop
1-2 cloves garlic, peel mince
1 medium jalapeno pepper, seed and chop
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
4 cups chicken stock, or more
1 cup canned hominy, drain
1 large chicken breast roasted or poached; skin, debone, and cut into large chop. Shred into slightly smaller portions
1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper or to taste
Accompaniments: Cotija or queso fresca 1/2″ cheese cubes, cilantro leaves, lime slices, avocado slices, tortilla chips
- Add oil to soup pot over medium heat; when hot add onion and sauté for 1 minute to soften. Add the garlic and toss until aromatic; add the green pepper, oregano, and cook an additional minute.
- Add the chicken stock and the hominy and bring to a simmer. Add the chicken meat to the soup, season lightly with salt and pepper, cover and simmer about 10 minutes.
- When ready to serve, season with about 1 tablespoon lime juice and add more to taste; it should be tangy. Serve in bowls with cheese cubes, cilantro, more lime, and additional accompaniments. Serves 2-4.