Thursday, May 1, 2008

Tortilla Soup

The first of the summer's squash showed up at this weekend's farmers' market. And tortilla soup is always the first recipe I think of when confronted with a vegetable drawer full of summer squash. My friend Merf taught me to make tortilla soup this way one summer when we both worked testing ESL students. After tasting this, our coworkers wanted to know why we were bothering to go to college. After all, we already knew how to cook.

Merf is the kind of cook who throws in a cup of this and a dash of that and mixes it up up with her hands. Every time she makes a dish it comes out a little different, and it's usually pretty delicious, too. The amounts in this recipe will be vague because it just wouldn't be right otherwise.

Free Spirit Tortilla Soup
oil for sauteing
an onion, chopped
garlic, minced
summer squash, sliced and cut in half if the pieces are large

Saute the onion over medium heat until soft. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant (about thirty seconds). Add the squash and saute until the squash is golden and soft but not mushy. Add the broth until it covers all the vegetables by about half an inch. Heat the soup and salt to taste.

My friend E tells me that when Merf taught her to make this soup, they added tomatoes with the broth. So feel free to add tomatoes. Or anything else.

The most important part of this recipe are the garnishes. Garnish with

a squeeze of lime
avocado, chopped
broken tortilla chips

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