Daily Bite: Aztec Soup

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Ingredients:
1 pasilla chile, seeded and deveined
6 corn tortillas, cut into strips
Cooking spray (such as Pam)
9 plum tomatoes, cut in half
1 tbsp. chopped garlic
2 medium onions
2 sprigs cilantro, finely chopped
1 tsp. powdered oregano
2 sprigs fresh basil, finely chopped
1 cup finely chopped smoked ham hock (leave only about 5 percent of fat)
7 cups fat-free chicken broth or 3 cubes concentrated chicken broth dissolved in 7 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup grated fat-free mozzarella cheese
6 tbsp. fat-free sour cream (optional)

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place opened chile on baking tray and roast 5 minutes or until toasted but not burned. Let cool, then chop into small pieces and set aside. Place tortilla strips on comal or baking tray and bake until golden brown. Set aside and allow to cool. Place tomatoes in skillet greased with cooking spray and add garlic and onions. Sauté 5 minutes. Add cilantro, oregano, and basil. Place mixture in food processor and purée. Grease skillet with cooking spray and sauté ham, then add tomato purée and chicken broth. Cover and cook over low heat 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve in bowls, and sprinkle with chopped chile and grated cheese. Add sour cream if desired. Garnish with tortilla strips and serve immediately. Makes 6 portions.

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