There’s a quaint neighborhood down Plymouth and Steele Avenue on the west side of Detroit. Kids run barefoot on the grass, men wash cars, and the ice cream truck plays the background soundtrack. The only thing that modernizes the picture is a small outdoor Pepto Bismol-pink food stand, owned by Chef Doris.
The Food Stand
If you turn around the corner, you’ll see the food stand in the front yard of the first house and a line of eager customers standing outside. You’ll be astonished to see the name board, which reads, ‘The Sharpest Eatery: Home of the $5 Meal.’ Yes, you can get a full and satisfying meal here just for $5, and the long line of eaters will tell you about the quality of food Chef Doris serves. The menu changes every day, based on the day’s groceries and shopping. You can choose from macaroni and cheese, red beans, greens, and rice, on a day’s menu. If you’d like to add meat to your meal, that’ll take just 5-7 minutes extra to prepare. The food stand opens 4 days a week and sells out most of the sides by 4 pm to a large lunch crowd.
Doris Sharpe-Frasier, 73, is known as Miss Doris to her neighbors. This small neighborhood Chef and her pick-up-only food stand recently garnered attention when a local newspaper columnist came up with a ‘$5 a meal’ sign. That was followed by an interview session, and an impromptu photo shoot and Chef Doris has found herself on the front page of the Detroit Free Press. Her children and grandchildren help her in shopping and preparing the day’s meal. Even after all the fame, Chef Doris’s biggest priority is to make sure that her community is well-fed and ready for the coming winter. Chef Doris is, in a nutshell, the thoughtful grandma of the neighborhood.