Posts tagged Windchimes Chinese Restaurant
Recipes to Try at Home: Fried Tofu
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This is a new dish that I didn’t know I needed in my life: Japanese Style Fried Tofu or otherwise known as Agedashi Tofu.

Windchimes Chinese has a version of this that only made me crave this style of tofu more so I found a recipe to try out!

AGEDASHI TOFU (DEEP-FRIED TOFU IN TSUYU BROTH)

Make this traditional Japanese tofu dish at home in just 25 minutes!

  • Author: Caroline Phelps

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes

  • Cook Time: 10 minutes

  • Total Time: 25 minutes

  • Yield: 4 people 1x

  • Category: Side

  • Method: Deep fryig

  • Cuisine: Japanese

SCALE 1X2X3X

INGREDIENTS

  • Two 12-ounce box silken tofu (drained)

  • potato starch or cornstarch (for dusting)

  • oil (for frying)

  • 1 cup dashi stock

  • 2 tablespoons mirin

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

TOPPINGS:

  • ginger (peeled and grated)

  • green onion or chives (finely chopped)

  • shiso leaves (chopped) optional

  • myoga (chopped) optional

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Drain the tofu and then wrap it in paper towels and place in a strainer for 30 minutes to remove excess moisture. Cut the tofu into four pieces, dry again with paper towels, then coat with the potato starch.

  2. Heat the oil to a suitable temperature for deep-frying (around 340 degrees). Carefully put the tofu pieces in to fry and when they turn golden, remove and drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.

  3. In a small pan heat up the dashi stock, mirin, soy sauce, sugar and salt. Bring to the boil, ensuring that the sugar has dissolved.

  4. Divide the tofu among four bowls. Pour a little of the hot broth into each bowl and garnish with the grated daikon, a dab of grated ginger, shiso, myoga, and green onion to taste.

NOTES

This Agedashi Tofu recipe is meant to be enjoyed immediately. The broth can be saved for later, but once the tofu is fried it will not keep in the fridge.

Also if you are more a visual learner here’s a video breaking down how to make this delicious dish too!

If you are like me you get overwhelmed quickly by the cooking process and end up just ordering the dish from Windchimes!

Monthly Horoscope: April Earth Dragon
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The Month of the Earth Dragon of the Chinese calendar starts on April 6th, 2019 and ends on May 4th, 2019. On May 5th, the new moon announces the passage in the Chinese calendar from the Fire Rabbit Month to the Month of the Earth Dragon of the Year of the Earth Pig, third month of the Chinese Year.

It is a period favorable to material and social transitions, marked by realism, lucidity but also by creative ideas. Good fortune in games and lottery is also favorable, because in this Dragon Month during the Year of the Pig 2019, all hopes are allowed. It is a prosperous month in terms of organization, during which community service is encouraged and progresses at a brisk pace.

This is the perfect time to set the stage for optimizing the future profitability of projects in the making. It is finally time to embark on an entrepreneurial activity that combines leisure, creativity and profits. During this period of the Year of the Pig under the zodiac sign of the Dragon, many may be tempted to reveal projects long kept secret. For some, it will be the process of enrolling in a sports or theater club, for others start a home-made jams business or even start writing the first chapter of a novel.

In summary, during the Dragon Month during the Year of the Pig 2019, know how to share your joys, your desires as well as your fears. And in this context, the Month of the Dragon makes it possible to realize how much friendship is a precious wealth to preserve and maintain.

Here are the horoscopes for the rest of the signs:

Rat Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Rat Rating: 6 / 10

Rat, you decompress from the accumulated stress of the previous months. You are resuming your strength. This is a key period to reorganize your future. If you are considering a change of work or home, start looking now for your situation to stabilize after the summer break. Finances are stabilizing. Watch out for the words that hurt. Be indulgent.

Ox Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Ox Rating: 5 / 10

Ox (Buffalo), you have to accept some changes that you did not want to see happen. An extra effort is required at work. You will be rewarded with your organizational know-how. Delicate period with regard to affective relationships. Do not stay in your corner waiting for it to pass.

Tiger Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Tiger Rating: 6 / 10

Tiger, you feel a small drop in shape compared to last month. Be careful what you say or what you rest on. Do not always trust luck. Watch your wallet. In case of emotional breakdown do not let things last and try an immediate reconciliation.

Rabbit Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Rabbit Rating: 7 / 10

Rabbit (Cat), your projects evolve positively over time and you have something to celebrate. Some new activities may take longer than expected. Make your sense of strategy work. New associations or friendly links can strengthen your social position. On the financial level, buy useful. When it comes to love, it's your self-confidence that is your main charm. Imminent return to the big leagues.

Dragon Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Dragon Rating: 7 / 10

Dragon, beautiful monthly prospects are available to you in many areas. You will finally win your case on topics that are important to you. Finally you are being listened to you and appreciated for your merits. The joy and the will you are showing make you much more attractive. Above all, avoid having negative people around you. You do not need that, you already had your share last year.

Snake Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Snake Rating: 4 / 10

Snake, this is a difficult month financially, organizationally and in terms of relationships. You may not be able to pay your debts if you make a bad decision. Be precise and transparent in your actions. Do not try to put yourself in a mold at all costs. Do not do anything to encourage bad people or feed jealousies. It is time to get out of sight in order to keep your strength and preserve your achievements.

Horse Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Horse Rating: 5 / 10

Horse, some important questions that have not yet been resolved could fuel an underlying anxiety. Pressure on the professional level. Pay attention to the quality of your oral expression. Even if you could find yourself in difficult situations, you will still find the strength and support to resist valiantly. For this do not turn your back on people who want you good. Watch your health.

Goat Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Goat Rating: 6 / 10

Goat (Sheep), nothing obliges you to see people who give you a semblance of love and are devoid of respect for you. It is high time to move on. During this lunar month, take time for your side activities and creative work, because the Dragon has good reasons to make you a pleasant surprise. Organize yourself and stick to your agenda. Stop futile expenses that meet no other need than to satisfy the moment.

Monkey Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Monkey Rating: 6 / 10

Monkey, your morale is going up little by little. The situation continues to stabilize. Take care of the people who support you. Do not put too much distance with your allies and know how to hear good advice. Be determined but do not force things. Do not leave room for individualism. Period favorable to investments. You progress.

Rooster Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Rooster Rating: 7 / 10

Rooster, you did well to rest and avoid stress. With the arrival of the month of Dragon some good news can cheer you up. Make yourself forgiven if you have recently offended some people. Newcomers to your social circle appreciate you for your analytical sense. Realize your creative ideas. Good monthly period for love too. On the way to new adventures.

Dog Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Dog Rating: 4 / 10

Dog, this is not the time to spoil beautiful things with arguments over futile topics. Do not expose your weak points to everyone. Avoid acting under the domination of feelings. Your problems shall eventually fade over time. Be patient. Avoid aggressiveness because you might regret it later. If you feel abandoned, develop other areas of interest with new people. Courage. Stay alert.

Pig Horoscope from April 6th to May 4th, 2019
Monthly Pig Rating: 8 / 10

Pig (Boar), a joyful reunion helps you you recharge your energy. You will be supported in your future projects but for now it is more of a gestation period until a full liberation in the coming months. Some favorable solutions to recent problems will eventually make you smile again. You finally turn the page. Emotions as well as finances are stabilized. Harmony found. Luck is on your side.

Find out more here!

Food Facts: Benefits of Eating Nuts
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In general, nuts are good sources of fat, fiber and protein.

Most of the fat in nuts is monounsaturated fat, as well as omega-6 and omega-3 polyunsaturated fat. However, they do contain some saturated fat.

Nuts also pack a number of vitamins and minerals, including magnesium and vitamin E.

Many studies have investigated the health benefits of increased nut intake.

One meta-analysis of 33 studies found that diets high in nuts do not significantly affect weight gain or weight loss .

Yet, despite having little effect on weight, many studies have shown that people who eat nuts live longer than those who don't. This may be due to their ability to help prevent a number of chronic diseases.

For example, nuts may reduce risk factors for metabolic syndrome, such as high blood pressure and cholesterol levels .

There are several yummy dishes at Windchimes that include a type of nut like our Honey Glazed Shrimp, any Kung Pao dishes, any Cashew dishes, and my favorite Honey Glazed Cashew Chicken!

Unique Vegetables in Chinese Food: Bamboo Shoots
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China is a large continent which in turn brings a lot of different food varieties. One vegetable that is seen in a lot of different Chinese cuisines in Bamboo shoots. What are they you ask?

As the name implies, bamboo shoots are the edible shoots of the bamboo plant, which is native to Asia. They are cut from the plant once they appear above the ground to preserve their tenderness and because if they are left to grow exposed, they will turn a green color. 

Fresh bamboo shoots are available at Asian or Chinese markets, or you can find canned bamboo shoots at most local grocery stores. Fresh shoots need to be boiled until tender, then husked and cut into pieces. Canned bamboo shoots only need to be heated since they are pre-cooked.

You may have eaten bamboo shoots at a Chinese restaurant as they are often part of a stir-fry. You can try them at home in almost any stir-fry dish, including stir-fry beef with bamboo shoots and stir-fry mushrooms and bamboo shoots.

Next time you order your favorite dish from Windchimes thing…does this have Bamboo shoots in it?

 
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Recipes to Try at Home: Spring Rolls
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SPRING ROLLS

  • Yield: 24 spring rolls

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes

  • Cook Time: 30 minutes

  • Total Time: 40 minutes

  • Course: Appetizer, dim sum

Spring Rolls are the vegetarian super light, crispy and tender vegetarian appetizer cousin of the traditional egg roll.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup canola oil divided

  • 8 cups napa cabbage sliced thinly

  • 2 cloves garlic minced

  • 2 carrots sliced thinly

  • 8 ounces bamboo shoots sliced thinly

  • 2 tablespoons mirin

  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

  • 24 8" square spring roll wrappers

  • canola oil for frying

INSTRUCTIONS

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Add half the canola oil to a large heavy skillet on medium high heat and add in the napa cabbage cooking 8-10 minutes while stirring until almost all the liquid it releases has cooked off.

  2. Add in the garlic, carrots and bamboo shoots and cook for 1 minute while stirring before adding in the mirin, soy sauce and sesame oil and stirring again then let filling cool completely.

  3. Mix cornstarch with two tablespoons of water.

  4. Lay out the spring roll wrapper, brush cornstarch slurry around the edges to moisten and add about 2 tablespoons of filling in a long rectangle shape, folding in from the sides and rolling the wrappers closed tightly.

  5. Heat 3 inches of oil in a dutch oven to 325 degrees and fry the spring rolls until golden brown (about 2-3 minutes).

Year of the Earth Pig: Lucky Foods to Eat
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Theres’s several ways to preserve your luck during this new year! One way is to eat lucky foods.

This years lucky food is Lychee!

During this year of the Earth Pig the two elements that allow the 12 signs of the Chinese calendar to maintain positive harmony through out 2019 are Fire and Metal. These signs are than associated with different features like Fire being associated with red color and Metal with white and grey. Applied to food and Chinese medicine, any food, fruit or vegetable with red and white as dominate colors has the energies (or movements as Chinese elements are called) to Fire and Metal.

Through out the year we want to create a balance or harmony with Fire and Earth in our own signs. Below are foods that will help your specific signs.

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Lucky starters 2019: cabbage salad, mozzarella and tomato salad, white radish salad

Lucky main dishes 2019: Bolognese spaghetti, Neapolitan pizza, seasons pizza, stuffed eggplant, Thai red curry

Lucky desserts 2019: Lychee fruit salad, cherry clafoutis, strawberry tart, raspberry charlotte, yogurt, floating island

Happy Lunar New Year: The Celebration Begins
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Just because the new year has begun doesn't mean you're allowed to rest.

While most countries that observe Lunar New Year offer three to seven days of public holidays, celebrations don't end until the 15th day of the first lunar month, also known as the Lantern Festival. (Lunar New Year in 2019 lasts from February 5 to February 19.)

There is a list of superstitious dos and don'ts for the new year but the rule of thumb is to say a lot of "kung hei fat choy"or "gong xi fa cai," and avoid saying things that may sound like a less auspicious word.

During the festival, people will travel around to visit relatives, who will prepare snacks and fill up candy boxes for the visits -- except for the third day of the month.

It's believed that arguments are more likely to happen on that day -- February 9, this year -- called chi kou (or "red mouth"). Hence, most people will engage in other activities like visiting a temple. In Hong Kong, a major spring festival horse racing event takes place every year on the third day.

During the 15 days, married couples have to give out red packets filled with money to children (and unmarried adults) to wish them luck.

The seventh day is renri, or the people's birthday (February 11). when the Chinese mother goddess Nuwa is said to have created mankind.

The highlight comes on the last day, during the Lantern Festival (February 19).

Being the only day when young girls in ancient Chinese society could go out to admire lanterns and meet boys, it's also been dubbed Chinese Valentine's Day.

Nowadays, cities around the world still put on massive lantern displays and fairs on the 15th day of the festival.

Some create more sparks than others. Like Nuanquan, a small Chinese town that puts on a spectacular "firework" show by throwing molten metal against a cold stone city wall.

Kung hei fat choy!

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Chinese New Years: Lucky Foods
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February 5th is Chinese New Years and there’s so much to celebrate! One thing that is very important to the celebration is food. There are certain dishes that are eaten for the symbolic meaning and luck.

The auspicious symbolism of these traditional Chinese New Year foods is based on their pronunciations or appearance. Not only do the dishes themselves matter, but also the preparation, and ways of serving and eating mean a lot.

The most common Chinese New Year foods includes dumplings, fish, spring rolls, and niangao. We've rounded up 7 essential Chinese, or Lunar, New Year dishes, and included the symbolism behind them all.

Here are the 7 lucky foods to eat:

1. Fish — an Increase in Prosperity

In Chinese, "fish" (鱼 Yú /yoo/) sounds like 'surplus'. Fish is a tradtional Chinese New Year dish. Chinese people always like to have a surplus at the end of the year, because they think if they have managed to save something at the end of the year, then they can make more in the next year.

Steamed fish is one of the most famous Chinese New Year recipes. What fish should be chosen for the New Year dinner is based on auspicious homophonics.

  • Crucian carp: As the first character of 'crucian carp' (鲫鱼 jìyú /jee-yoo/) sounds like the Chinese word 吉 (jí /jee/ 'good luck'), eating crucian carp is considered to bring good luck for the next year.

  • Chinese mud carp: The first part of the Chinese for "mud carp" (鲤鱼 lǐyú /lee-yoo/) is pronounced like the word for gifts (礼 lǐ /lee/). So Chinese people think eating mud carp during the Chinese New Year symbolizes wishing for good fortune.

  • Catfish: The Chinese for "catfish" (鲶鱼 niányú /nyen-yoo/) sounds like 年余 (nián yú) meaning 'year surplus'. So eating catfish is a wish for a surplus in the year.

  • Eating two fish, one on New Year's Eve and one on New Year's Day, (if written in a certain way) sounds like a wish for a surplus year-after-year.

  • If only one catfish is eaten, eating the upper part of the fish on New Year's Eve and the remainder on the first day of the new year can be spoken with the same homophonic meaning.

2. Chinese Dumplings — Wealth

With a history of more than 1,800 years, dumplings (饺子 Jiǎozi /jyaoww-dzrr/) are a classic Chinese food, and a traditional dish eaten on Chinese New Year's Eve, widely popular in China, especially in North China.

Chinese dumplings can be made to look like Chinese silver ingots (which are not bars, but boat-shaped, oval, and turned up at the two ends). Legend has it that the more dumplings you eat during the New Year celebrations, the more money you can make in the New Year.

Dumplings generally consist of minced meat and finely-chopped vegetables wrapped in a thin and elastic dough skin. Popular fillings are minced pork, diced shrimp, fish, ground chicken, beef, and vegetables. They can be cooked by boiling, steaming, frying or baking.

How they're made: Almost all Chinese people can make dumplings. First they mix the dough, second make the dough into round "wrappers" with a rolling pin, third fill the wrappers with stuffing, fourth pinch the "wrapper" together into the desired shape, and fifth cook them.

Different Dumpling Fillings Have Different Meanings

Chinese don't eat Chinese sauerkraut (酸菜 suāncài /swann-tseye/) dumplings at Spring Festival, because it implies a poor and difficult future. On New Year's Eve it is a tradition to eat dumplings with cabbage and radish, implying that one's skin will become fair and one's mood will become gentle.

How to Make LUCKY Dumplings

  • When making dumplings there should be a good number of pleats. If you make the junction too flat, it is thought to purport poverty.

  • Some Chinese put a white thread inside a dumpling, and the one who eats that dumpling is supposed to possess longevity. Sometimes a copper coin is put in a dumpling, and the one who eats it is supposed to become wealthy.

  • Dumplings should be arranged in lines instead of circles, because circles of dumplings are supposed to mean one's life will go round in circles, never going anywhere.

Lucky Saying for Eating Dumplings

Zhāo cái jìn bǎo (招财进宝/jaoww tseye jin baoww/): 'Bringing in wealth and treasure' — a felicitous wish for making money and amassing a fortune.

Read more about Chinese dumplings.

3. Spring Rolls — Wealth

Spring rolls (春卷 Chūnjuǎn /chwnn- jwen/) get their name because they are traditionally eaten during the Spring Festival. It is a dish especially popular in East China: Jiangxi, Jiangsu, Shanghai, Fujian, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, etc.

Spring rolls are a Cantonese dim sum dish of cylindrical-shaped rolls filled with vegetables, meat, or something sweet. Fillings are wrapped in thin dough wrappers, then fried, when the spring rolls are given their golden-yellow color.

Lucky Saying for Eating Spring Rolls

黄金万两 (hwung-jin wan-lyang/): 'A ton of gold' (because fried spring rolls look like gold bars) — a wish for prosperity.

Read more about spring rolls.

4. Glutinous Rice Cake — a Higher Income or Position

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Glutinous rice cake (年糕 Niángāo /nyen-gaoww/) is a traditional Chinese New Year recipe. In Chinese, glutinous rice cake sounds like it means "'getting higher year-on- by year"'. In Chinese people's minds, this means the higher you are the more prosperous your business is a general improvement in life. The main ingredients of niangao are sticky rice, sugar, chestnuts, Chinese dates, and lotus leaves.

Lucky Saying for Eating Niangao

年年高 (niánnián gāo /nyen-nyen gaoww/): 'Getting higher year-after-year by year', can imply children's height, rise in business success, better grades in study, promotions at work, etc.

Read more details on Glutinous Rice Cake.

5. Sweet Rice Balls — Family Togetherness

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Sweet rice ball (汤圆 Tāngyuán /tung-ywen/) is the main food for China's Lantern Festival, however, in south China, people eat them throughout the Spring Festival. The pronunciation and round shape of tangyuan are associated with reunion and being together. That's why they are favored by the Chinese during the New Year celebrations.

Lucky Sayings for Eating Tangyuan

团团圆圆 (Tuántuán yuányuán /twann-twann ywen-ywen/ 'group-group round-round'): Happy (family) reunion!

6. Longevity Noodles — Happiness and Longevity

Longevity noodles (长寿面 Chángshòu Miàn /chung-show myen/) unsurprisingly symbolize a wish for longevity. Their length and unsevered preparation are also symbolic of the eater's life.

They are longer than normal noodles and uncut, either fried and served on a plate, or boiled and served in a bowl with their broth.

7. Good Fortune Fruit — Fullness and Wealth

Certain fruits are eaten during the Chinese New Year period, such as tangerines and oranges, and pomeloes. They are selected as they are particularly round and "golden" in color, symbolizing fullness and wealth, but more obviously for the lucky sound they bring when spoken.

Chinese New Year fruits

Eating and displaying tangerines and oranges is believed to bring good luck and fortune due to their pronunciation, and even writing. The Chinese for orange (and tangerine) is 橙 (chéng /chnng/), which sounds the same as the Chinese for 'success' (成). One of the ways of writing tangerine (桔 jú /jyoo/) contains the Chinese character for luck (吉 jí /jee/).

Eating pomeloes/shaddocks is thought to bring continuous prosperity. The more you eat, the more wealth it will bring, as the traditional saying goes. The Chinese for pomelo (柚 yòu /yo/) sounds like 'to have' (有 yǒu), except for the tone, and exactly like 'again' (又 yòu).


Chinese Food: A Christmas Tradition
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I was recently was looking over the numbers on Windchimes website and noticed that last month on December 25th there was a large spike in business. I know a lot of America celebrates Christmas on that day and typically spend it with family/friends and home cooked meals. But what if that wasn’t your holiday or you didn’t want to cook? The answer is Chinese food.

This is no surprise. The tradition of going out for Chinese food on Christmas day has been around since 1935 when Jewish American’s were one of the largest non-Christian immigrant groups along with Chinese people. That meant there were new populations that didn’t typically see December 25th as a holiday. While a lot of stores/restaurants were closed many Jewish and Chinese immigrants found something of a shared experience of celebrating who they were together in a safe space.

“Chinese restaurants were safe. There was definitely an era for Jews when they felt insecure about being American and being perceived as foreign, especially since a good, good number of them came from Eastern Europe,” said Jennifer 8. Lee, author of Fortune Cookie Chronicles and producer of the documentary film The Search for General Tso. “They knew at least in Chinese restaurants they wouldn’t be judged about being foreign.”

Today you can find more restaurants open on Christmas this tradition has stuck through and through. It’s even been popularized in movies A Christmas Story. Even though the original film has a few flaws on political correctness the remake of it in 2017 fixed that:

All in all Chinese food is a staple during the holiday season so maybe next year instead of stressing out on what to make why not make a new tradition and go out and celebrate at Windchimes! It’ll be great time!

Pad Thai: Food History
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What is Pad Thai?

Pad thai is made with soaked dried rice noodles, which are stir-fried with eggs and chopped firm tofu, and is flavored with tamarind pulp, fish sauce, dried shrimp, garlic or shallots, red chili pepper and palm sugar and served with lime wedges and often chopped roasted peanuts. It may contain other vegetables like bean sprouts, garlic chives, pickled radishes or turnips, and raw banana flowers. It may also contain fresh shrimp, crab, squid, chicken or other animal products. Many of the ingredients are provided on the side as condiments such as the red chili pepper, lime wedges, roasted peanuts, bean sprouts and other miscellaneous fresh vegetables. Vegetarian versions may substitute soy sauce for the fish sauce and omit the shrimp.


Where did it come from?

A dish of stir-fried rice noodles is thought by some to have been introduced to Ayutthaya during the time of the Ayutthaya Kingdom by Chinese traders and subsequently altered to reflect Thai flavor profiles.

During World War II, Thailand suffered a rice shortage due to the war and floods. To reduce domestic rice consumption, the Thai government under Prime Minister Plaek Phibunsongkhram promoted eating noodles instead. His government promoted rice noodles and helped to establish the identity of Thailand. As a result, a new noodle called sen chan (named after Chanthaburi Province) was created. Pad thai has since become one of Thailand's national dishes. Today, some food vendors add pork or chicken (although the original recipe did not contain pork because of the government's perception that pork was a Chinese meat). Some food vendors still use the original recipe.

Come in to Windchimes today to try our version! You wont’ be disappointed!