Wednesday, February 6, 2013

[HOT LIST] Chicken soup

Photo from the Internet.

This post authored by EID Co-Conspirator Stefanie Cobb. 

The holidays are dead and gone, flu season has come into full swing, and it’s really fucking cold outside. February’s wrath bids the temptation to stock up on NyQuil, call into work, and hibernate until the trees start budding again. In an effort to avoid the downward spiral of self-loathing and misery that Michigan winters so graciously provoke, let’s consider chicken soup. This brothy delight is an ultimate “feel better” food and reliever of wintertime’s bitterness. Many swear by its slightly-less-than-scientific ability to remedy cold and flu symptoms, but if anything, at least it’s something to occupy your chops and quit whining.

Now, you could follow Deadpin’s advice and try to make your own. Yeah. Nothing like a little chicken and snot soup to make you feel better, you wretched disgusting mess of mortality. What are you going to do, cook it on your forehead? Better to leave this one to the professionals and their magic chicken anti-viral juju soup.

As a relatively standard menu item, most restaurants tend to serve up a lot of half-assed, soggy-noodle, Campbell’s imitation cup of bullshit. Fortunately, there are places in and around the city that know chicken soup and know it well. Pay these places a little visit if you’re feeling defeated by the flu or the unwelcome cold weather blahs (or, you know, if you just like soup). They know how to make you feel REAL good.

This is where magic happens. Photo from the Internet.
#1 Los Galanes (3362 Bagley Ave, Detroit)
Those who theorize about the healing powers of chicken soup must be referring to the one served at Los Galanes. That is a magical, magical soup. The carrots, zucchini, cabbage, and redskin potatoes are insanely tender and appropriately proportioned with the broth. Oh sweet Jesus, that broth. It’s not too bland. It’s not too salty. It’s just delicious. They top the bowl off by adding chicken that’s so ridiculously juicy, it’s almost effortless to fork off the bone. Every ingredient plays an essential role in fulfilling the unity of such a glorious soup. Although no one can confirm the truth behind its alleged curing ability, I’m almost certain I spotted mini angels swimming in my bowl.

#2 Green Dot Stables (2200 W Lafayette Blvd., Detroit)
We love Green Dot, Detroit loves Green Dot, EVERYONE LOVES GREEN DOT. That is unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past year. Putting all the obvious reasons for adoring this place aside, let’s talk about their Chicken Paprikash Soup. It’s really good and like everything else on their menu, its only $3. I may just be a sucker for anything with spaetzle, but any Hungarian twist on chicken soup is simply divine. Hey, if all else fails and you still find yourself seeking comfort from the cold, their drinks are still only $3 so you can get tanked to forget about how much winter blows. You could also get tanked AND eat Chicken Paprikash Soup.

Photo from Foodspotting.
#3 Pollo Chapin (2054 Junction St, Detroit)
It’s nearly impossible NOT to leave this poultry treasure box in a good mood because it is just so silly. Your dining experience will most likely be in the company of several tiny Mexican children drinking Jarritos (a Mexican version of Faygo only 9,000 times more sugary) and watching Dora the Explorer. Real life, y’all; this is not a stereotypical postulation. Their chicken noodle soup, costing something like a dollar fifty a bowl, is on point with its noodle to broth to vegetable ratio. There are few things in this world (well, at least in the world of dining out) that are more infuriating than ordering a bowl of chicken noodle soup and receiving a bowl of broth ONLY and, if you’re lucky, find a noodle and carrot floating around. Seriously, such a dick move on the behalf of whoever thinks it is acceptable to pull a stunt like that. Also, the chicken in their chicken noodle soup is, like, really chicken. It’s none of that creepy, spongy, cubed shit that sometimes makes you wonder if your body will actually be capable of digesting it. Pollo Chapin loves chicken. I love Pollo Chapin.

#4 Rosie O’Grady’s Irish Pub (279 W Nine Mile, Ferndale)
Their chicken and dumpling soup will make you question everything you thought was true about Rosie’s. It’s essentially chicken pot pie in soup form with some peppered dumplings thrown in. A hearty bowl could provide just the comfort you need to press on through a day of February blues. The catch is that this place can be a real nightmare, so it’s probably best to avoid going after 6pm on a weekend. Go on a weekday afternoon and you’ll have plenty of opportunity to enjoy a cup without having to worry about ending up wedged in between two inebriates dry humping to Ke$ha…unless you’re into that.

#5 Polish Village Café (2990 Yemans Ave, Hamtramck)
Seeing as Fat Tuesday is next week, it is only appropriate to mention Hamtown. With this one, I recommend not only ordering the chicken noodle soup, but also everything else on the menu. While my intentions are not to veer away from fact that this is a “Chicken Soup” Hot List, I simply cannot imagine going to Polish Village Café and ONLY ordering soup, especially since it comes free with an entrée anyway. In any event, this is another place around the city that owns in properly proportioning chicken noodle ingredients (not too many noodles, not too much chicken, not too much broth, etc.). If you’ve been struck with the flu bug, order a quart, go home, and eat it all in one sitting. That shit works. For real.

Bubbling under Polonia (2934 Yemans Ave, Hamtramck), Blue Star Cafe (239 W Congress St, Detroit), Christine’s Cuisine (729 E Nine Mile, Ferndale), La Feast (315 S Main St, Royal Oak)