Fire Sign Café Tortilla Soup
(courtesy of Amy Herman, co-owner of Fire Sign Café in Tahoe City. Makes 6 cups)
Start by reading the whole recipe (don’t cheat).
1½ stalks celery, diced
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon garlic, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped (save remainder of bunch for garnish)
2 tomatoes, diced
2 ears fresh corn (cut corn off cob and discard cob)
Sauté all items above in a stockpot (preferably stainless steel) with vegetable oil until onions are translucent.
2 cups vegetable stock
Bring to low boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for five minutes.
2 cups crushed tomatoes
1 cup V8 juice
2 cups black beans, cooked
2 bay leaves
¾ teaspoon dried oregano
Return to low boil, then turn down heat and let soup simmer for additional 20 minutes. Now add:
Salt and pepper, to taste
Tortilla chips, to garnish
Sprig fresh cilantro
Fan 3 avocado, thinly sliced, next to sour cream (optional for extra “wow factor”)