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Lemon Rice Soup is a warm, comforting bowl that’s a staple at countless Greek restaurants in Northwest Indiana.

A cup of the region’s classic often complements dinners at such vinyl cabin restaurants, unless you opt for the salad instead. The beloved soup, of course, consists of lemon and rice, along with egg and chicken broth which gives it a hearty texture. Regional places like The Commander, Round the Clock, and The Stuffed Pepper serve it in a variety of styles, including thick and creamy or tangy and lemony. It can be sweet or tangy, and a true pro knows how to soak up as much of a hot roll as possible.

It is sometimes called Greek penicillin because all the vitamin C can cure the most stubborn flu or stubborn cold.

“It’s like the father in ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ with the Windex,” said Robert Nava, head of the Jedi Garden. “It will cure anything.”

Jedi’s Garden has a 50-year-old family recipe for lemon rice soup that has been savored for generations.

“Only two people get there,” he said. “It’s a secret recipe that we don’t show to anyone.”

Lemon rice soup sells best in the winter, but it’s popular year-round, Nava said. Tomato bisque and chicken noodle easily sells over at the Ridge Road and Cline Avenue restaurant in Griffith.

“We use 20 gallons of it a day,” he said. “It’s a great comforting soup. People like the consistency. We sell liter after liter.”

By Joseph S. Pete, [email protected], 219-933-3316


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