ORIGINAL DINNERS: “CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP” Friday, July 13, 2012
You’ve seen the old comic trope. Cartoon man (and it’s always a man) falls asleep. Cartoon man dreams of food (often marshmallows). Cartoon man wakes up with a mouthful of feathers because it dawns on cartoon man that he’s been trying, as he sleeps, to swallow his own pillow.
But what if those figurative pillows were real and were filled not with feathers, but with something like roasted chicken, instead? But then it wouldn’t be funny. It would be delicious.
When you think Chicken Noodle Soup, you think of the old, wholesome folk remedy that helps put you back on the path to good health.
Well, think again.
Our crew in the kitchen has a playful penchant for deconstructing traditional dishes and reconstructing them into something new and exciting.
Ergo, our “Chicken Noodle Soup” is not what it sounds like. Rather, our crew has turned the dish inside-out by turning it outside-in, stuffing the pillow, as it were.
In other words, we take those ingredients left to float and swim in their savory broth and stuff them instead into several pillowy housemade raviolo.
And what’s on the inside? Well, we skip the traditional mire poix and opt instead for a rather sophisticated filling of roasted chicken, roasted shallots, spinach and seasonal mushrooms.
Once the ravioli have been stuffed, we set them adrift in a savory onion-parmesan broth, fortify it with generous shavings of parmesan cheese and put the figurative bow on the literal present by topping it off with an artfully arranged celery heart salad.
And that is how you take a sight gag and dazzle it into something you thought only possible in dreams.
It might not be your grandmother’s Chicken Noodle Soup, but if it makes an impression on you the way it does on us, it just might be hers someday, and someday soon.