I have tried numerous tortilla soup recipes since I moved to Texas and discovered how much I enjoyed it, but I hadn't been able to find one that was as good as I could get in my favorite restaurant. My search is over! I tried the Tortilla Soup in the Houston Junior League cookbook Stop and Smell the Rosemary (a cookbook I should really use more often, as everything I have tried out of it has been wonderful), and it was fabulous.

The only change I made to this recipe was to halve the oil to 3 tablespoons. It was a good call - the recipe didn't need it one bit. I served this tonight with the broccoli apple slaw from September (also very good, and a nice accompaniment) and the Spicy Cheese Twists from CL Complete (just ok). We topped the soup with just a tablespoon or two of Monterey Jack cheese; you could also top it with chopped avocado and/or sour cream. It's so good - hope you enjoy it as much as DH and I did!

Tortilla Soup
6 tablespoons vegetable oil [I used 3]
8 corn tortillas, chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
3 bay leaves
6 cups chicken stock [I made broth using Penzey's soup base, then added 1 tsp of soup base to the pot]
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 to 6 cooked chicken breast halves, shredded (about 2 cups)

Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add tortillas, garlic, cilantro, and onion. Saute 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes. Bring to a boil and add cumin, chili powder, bay leaves, and chicken stock. Return to a boil. Reduce heat. Add salt and cayenne. Simmer 30 minutes. Remove bay leaves and stir in chicken. Reheat. Garnish with monterey jack, avocado, sour cream, and tortilla strips

Serves 6 (1.5 cup servings)
5 WW points with reduced oil, not counting garnish