At trendy Hotel Matilda in San Miguel de Allende, executive chef Jorge Boneta has a best-selling dish on the menu that’s a year-round favorite at the hotel — Hotel Matilda Tortilla Soup.
For chef Boneta, his tortilla soup is an expression of his culinary persona — his lifelong passion for cooking shaped early on by an intimate family life that centered around the kitchen and good food, extensive travel in Mexico to hone his knowledge of the varied and unique cuisines of the different regions of the country, and professional experience at several of Mexico’s leading resorts.
Translation: His Hotel Matilda Tortilla Soup is the way Mexican foodies prepare tortilla soup at home!
- 3 tablespoons plus 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 medium-sized white onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic
- 6 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
- One 32-ounce carton chicken stock
- 8 ounces corn tortilla chips
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon powdered chicken stock
- 1 corn tortilla, julienned, for garnish
- 1 pasilla chile, seeded and stemmed, for garnish
- 1 ripe avocado, pitted and cubed, for garnish
- Crème fraîche, for garnish
- Pork rinds, for garnish (optional)
Heat 3 tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a pot over low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 4 minutes. Increase heat to medium and add the tomatoes; cook for about 7 minutes. Add the chicken stock, tortilla chips, tomato paste, and powdered chicken stock and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and cook for about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Test the oil with 1 tortilla strip — if the oil sizzles as soon as the tortilla strip is dropped, add the remaining strips in batches.
Fry until lightly browned, and remove with a pair of tongs to drain on paper towels. Next, add the chile and cook until crisp, just 2-3 seconds on all sides. Remove from heat, let cool, and chop.
Remove the soup from heat and let cool. Put the soup in a blender and blend it very well. Transfer the soup back to the pot and reheat. Serve garnished with the tortilla strips, pasilla chile, avocado, crème fraîche, cilantro, and pork rinds, if using.