Catalina Cooking: tortilla soup

Pictured above is vegan tortilla soup soup. Courtesy photo

After getting off the cold windy ocean and back on land the only thing I wanted was some tortilla soup. This is what I made. I try to buy organic and fresh as possible. Feel free to email me with any questions or ideas. If you would like help in selecting items for your pantry, just let me know!

Tortilla Soup

Serves 4 with leftovers for breakfast!

2 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Sweet White Onion diced as carefully as possible.

1 Jalapeno sliced thin

1 Red Pepper diced

14 cloves of garlic sliced thin… yes 14. Keeps you healthy and does not smell.

2 Quarts of chicken or vegetable stock.. Homemade or organic. (careful with the low sodium as it has yeast to add flavor for those allergic)

1 Cup of fresh or canned sweet corn

1 16 ounce can of diced tomatoes or fresh when sweet and in season.

1 t Onion Powder

1t Garlic Powder

1 t Merkin or Chipotle powder

2 t Ground Cumin

1 Medium Zucchini or Chayote squash medium dice

Sea Salt to taste.

4 Corn Tortillas Julienne

2 Crispy Tortilla

1/4 cup Diced Hot Jack Cheese

4 Lemon Wedge.

Bunch of Chopped Cilantro

Saute the fresh vegetables in the olive oil careful not to brown. Olive oil is not meant to be a browning oil. After the vegetables become somewhat relaxed and a bit clear,

add the chicken or vegetable stock and bring to a boil. After the soup has reached the boil, reduce the flame and simmer on low. Add the remaining ingredieants and simmer about 12 minutes keeping hot. Add the Julienne tortillas, stir for about 2 minutes and put in a bowl which you have put hot water in to take the chill from the bowl.

I had Broiled salmon and jared oysters for 3 and the 4th is a vegetarian so I put in the vegan sausage! Use chicken, your fresh caught fish, tofu. Just have fun and not take it so seriously

Topped with the crispy tortillas, Cilantro and squeeze of lemon.

I as well put about a tablespoon of El Pato in my bowl. I really like it and you do not need to swear by Siracha. Mix it up and try new items.

For breakfast the next day, I put the soup in a pot and popped in a couple eggs and poached them just perfectly runny. Once again in the warmed up bowl. I topped it with yogurt and diced avocado. You can have this version for dinner as well any time!

Capt. Vaughn Allen was a private chef and butler for the ultra rich and famous most of his life. Vaughn was recently called out of retirement to cook the intimate celebration dinner for Sir Ringo Starr and his close friends. Vaughn is businessman, a scuba instructor and most recently a yacht broker in Redondo Beach. You can contact him at


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