This colourful soup is inspired by the spicy and complex flavours of chilli con carne. Full of delicious vegetables and served with tortillas and a refreshing salsa, it makes a healthy main course soup.
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
500 g minced chicken
1 onion, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 red or yellow capsicum, deseeded and finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 can chopped tomatoes (about 400 g)
1 litre chicken stock, preferably homemade (recipes on this website)
¼ tsp ground coriander
¼ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp chilli powder, or to taste
200 g zucchini, cut into cubes
1 cup (140 g) fresh or frozen corn kernels, thawed if frozen
1 can red kidney beans (about 400 g), drained and rinsed
12 flour tortillas
salt and pepper
For the salsa
2 tbsp lime juice
100 g cherry tomatoes, quartered
6 spring onions, finely chopped
1 cup (60 g) chopped rocket
salt and pepper
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Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a high heat. Add the minced chicken and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion, celery, capsicum and garlic. Continue cooking, stirring often, for about 2 minutes or until the onion begins to soften. Stir in the tomatoes, stock, coriander, cumin, oregano and chilli powder. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer for 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 160ºC. Add the zucchini, corn and kidney beans to the soup. Bring back to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover the pan again. Simmer the soup for a further 10 minutes or until the zucchini is just tender.
Meanwhile, wrap the stack of tortillas tightly in foil and heat in the oven for about 10 minutes or until warmed through and softened.
To make the salsa, place the lime juice in a bowl. Halve, stone, peel and cut the avocados into cubes, then add to the bowl and toss them in the lime juice. Gently mix in the tomatoes, spring onions and rocket, adding seasoning to taste. Take care not to break up the avocado cubes.
Season the soup with a little salt and pepper to taste. Ladle the soup into warm bowls and serve. Spoon the salsa on top of the soup or eat it, wrapped in the warm tortillas, as an accompaniment.
Some more ideas…
*Minced turkey is another great option for this soup – use it instead of chicken mince. *You can use other kinds of canned beans, such as borlotti beans.
*Beans and pulses are a good source of dietary fibre, particularly soluble fibre which can help to reduce high blood cholesterol and blood glucose levels. They also provide useful amounts of vitamin B1 and iron. *Vitamin C from the salsa will help the body to absorb iron from the beans. *Avocados are rich in vitamin B6, which is vital for making the ‘feel-good’ hormone serotonin. They also provide the anti-oxidant vitamin E which can help to protect against heart disease.