Chinese New Year and Duck Soup
It is Chinese New Year, the Year of the Goat, or Lamb, or Sheep, depending on your belief or interpretation.
I headed up to Chicago’s Asia on Argyle for the festivities. Unlike the South Side version of Chinatown, Argyle Street and the surrounding area have Vietnamese and other Asian businesses.
I had planned having lunch at Tank, which is known for Pho, the ubiquitous Vietnamese beef soup. After a conversation with a friend, I was convinced the Mi Vit Tiem, duck noodle soup, would satisfy my appetite.
This soup was awesome. A hearty broth, thin egg noodles, a duck leg, cloud ear mushrooms, Chinese dates, and other good things.
Broth makes Vietnamese soups so delicious and this broth did not disappoint. It could probably cure just about anything, it was that good.
The roast duck was braised perfectly and the meat was falling off the bone. The crunchy texture from the vegetables was a nice contrast to the noodles and duck.
The soup came with a plate of basil, bean sprouts, Jalapenos, limes, and a dish of pickled daikon and carrots. Basil and lime added a nice herbal and acidic combination. Eating the noodles with the peppers tamed their heat.
There are other condiments on the table you can add. Sriracha, hot red pepper sauce, soy, and a bean paste sauce.
A little dab of one or the other made each spoonful a separate delight.
Tank is known throughout the city for its soups. It does get crowded. This being Chinese New Year, the wait was about one half hour. It was well worth it.
The Duck Noodle Soup was $9.95. It was more than well worth it. The portion was large and I barely finished it.
Thanks to Alan Lake for the tip on Duck Noodle Soup. Oh, it is #63 on the menu.
After lunch, I did a little shopping in one of the many Asian Markets. I bought some chicken feet to make stock with. But, that is a story for another day.