Caitlin, having a bit of fun while we wait to have lunch at Tacubaya.
I finally went to Castle In The Air to use my gift certificate that I got for my birthday, way back in October. I really wrestled with taking one of their classes versus just buying a bunch of their wonderful papers and crafty goodies. In the end I decided that I would be happier with stocking my craft cabinet, and I bought the above items. I guess I'll be making my Valentine cards this year. Before we went to Castle in the Air, we had lunch at Tacubaya, the sister restaurant to Dona Tomas, that I blogged about a year ago. I can't get enough of their tasty food, I even have their cook book.
David ordered a Chile relleno
We shared their homemade chips and guacamole
This is no ordinary salad. It has the most tasty dressing that I believe is a lime vinagrette and as you can see a nice slice of avocado. To top it off they also sprinkle "pepitas," toasted pumpkin seeds.
Last but not least this amazing tortilla soup! This is my favorite thing they serve. I am including the recipe for this soup from their cook book, you must try it.
Tortilla Soup from Tacubaya
2 guajillo chiles
1 ancho chile
1 cup warm water
3 heirloom tomatoes or vine-ripened tomatoes, or 6 roma tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic
1 1/2 quarts chicken broth
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 white onion, cut into 1/3-inch dice
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1/4 pound baby spinach
1/3 pound queso Oaxaca, shredded
2 avocados, diced
2 cups loosely crushed tortilla chips
Place a dry skillet over medium heat. Add the quajillo and ancho chilles and toast for 2 to 3 minutes, pressing them in to the pan and turning occasionally with tongs to prevent burning, until the skins begin to brown and the chiles become soft and flexible and give off their spicy aroma. While the chiles are still hot, remove the stems and seeds and submerge in a bowl of hot water for about 30 minutes to rehydrate. Drain the chiles and transfer to a blender. Add the warm water and puree until smooth. Leave this puree in the blender.
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the tomatoes and garlic in a small baking dish and roast for about 45 minutes, until the tomato skins begin to blacken and split. The juice will bleed from the tomatoes and caramelize on the bottom of the pan. Add the tomatoes and garlic to the blender with the chiles and puree on high speed for 1 to 2 minutes.
Place the broth in a large saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Place the baking dish on the stove top over high heat. Add a few ladles of the simmering chicken broth and scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen the caramelized tomato bits. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, then pour this mixture back into the chicken broth.
Place a separate soup pot over high heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and saute for 4 to 5 minutes, until translucent.Add the tomato and chile puree, decrease the heat to medium,and bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon to prevent scorching. The consistency should be that of a thick marinarra sauce. Pass the broth directly through a fine-mesh strainer into the soup pot and gently simmer for 20 minutes so the flavors come together. Add the shredded chicken and simmer for about 5 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt if necessary.
To serve, divide the spinach, cheese, and avocado between 6 bowls and ladle the hot soup over each.Top with the tortilla chips and serve immediately.
The soup can be refrigerated in a covered container for up to 3 days and reheated as necessary, but the spinach and cheese, avocado, and tortilla chip garnishes should always be added at the last minute.