Thursday, December 2, 2010

Taco Soup

"Sleeping  Beauty's Winter Castle" at Disneyland in Anaheim, California

There's one very good reason to go to Anaheim, California and you've probably already guessed what it is: to visit Disneyland! Another reason? El Torito's Tortilla Soup!

Last week we escaped a over-hyped blizzard and headed to Disneyland for Thanksgiving. While we were there we took a "Holiday Tour."
We visited some interesting places in Disneyland--there was a Menorah in an upper window on Main Street U.S.A., we tasted peppermint fudge at the Candy Palace, and visited a Thanksgiving turkey (pardoned by the president) near Reindeer Roundup. During our trip I spotted two people wearing turkey hats (yes, fake roasted turkey, oye.) It was like a strange "Where's Waldo" moment.
 Peppermint and chocolate fudge samples.
A pardoned turkey.

On a chilly rainy night we went to El Torito's restaurant. Their Tortilla Soup is serious comfort food! The following recipe seems to be as close as I can come. I've been trying to make it at home--trying recipes both packaged and from scratch.

Taco Soup
1-2 T Olive oil
5-6 Chicken tenders
Black pepper
1 can diced tomatoes (juice from tomatoes and all)
1 can beans (your choice: Northern, Black, Pinto, Kidney--rinsed well)
1 box chicken broth
1 onion (red, white or yellow)
Taco seasoning (1 pkg - Or make your own)
Splash (1/8-1/4 C) Milk

Sour cream
Crushed corn chips
Grated cheese
Note: El Torito serves their soup with avocado slices

Start by cooking the chicken tenders in olive oil with a couple of grinds of black pepper. When the tenders are cooked put them on a plate and cut them into bite sizes and pull out the tendon bit. Put the chicken back in the pan. Chop up the onion (about 1 small onion or 1/2 C chopped onion) and toss it in the pan to caramelize and cook with the chicken.

In a medium-large soup pan, add the chicken broth and heat on medium. When the chicken starts to caramelize (i.e. turn golden brown, and the onions are somewhat translucent) add the taco seasoning and about 1/2-1 C water to the frying pan. This deglazes the pan and ensures the taco seasoning gets mixed in. Add the chicken mixture in the frying pan to the chicken broth in the soup pan. Add the rinsed beans and the splash of milk. Heat approximately 10-15 minutes and serve with your favorite toppings.

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P.S. - My favorite Disneyland rides decked out for the holidays? "Haunted Mansion" and "It's a Small World." What are your favorite rides at Disneyland?
Haunted Mansion
It's a Small World


  1. I love taco soup too! Yumm.

    If you are looking for some new recipes visit my food blog at

    Cheers - Danielle

  2. It's serious comfort food! Thanks for the link!



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