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What is Lo Mein?
 
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There are so many different types of Chinese food that have spread through out American culture thanks to several of Chinese food restaurants all over the continent. Dishes like General Tso's and the basic Stir Fry has become an common food in our diets and even have become hybrid in other everyday food. One of the most common dishes is Lo Mein. But what is Lo Mein and how did it become the famous dish it is? 

 Lo Mein in so many places, it actually originated in China, as a wheat flour noodle dish. It is unclear exactly who invented the process of mixing water and flour to make noodles, but the Chinese have been eating them for over 2,000 years! This takes us back to the Han Dynasty (206 B.C. – 220 A.D.). Noodles have become a large part of Chinese culture. They are almost always served long and uncut because they symbolize a long and prosperous life. They are even part of big celebrations like birthdays and sometimes placed on grave sites for good luck.

The word itself comes from the Cantonese “lōu mihn” meaning “stirred noodles” and is actually traditionally made from elastic thin flour or egg noodles. Many people intertwine Chow Mein and Lo Mein, but they are two different dishes. Chow Mein is made from the same noodles as Lo Mein, but instead of keeping the noodles soft, Chow Mein contains fried noodles, which may sometimes be very crispy.

The two types of noodles you most commonly see are wheat noodles and rice noodles. Now, wheat noodles can be found all over China, but they originated in the Northern parts of China where wheat was a staple crop. Making these noodles is considered an art and you can sometimes see street noodle vendors “pulling” the dough to make the noodles.

 
 

Lo Mein has a history and has even become so popular that there are several ways you can now make it. There are even recipes online. Try to make Lo Mein for yourself but if you want to avoid the hassle just come in and get some from us! 

 

Daily Horoscope: August 8, 2018
 
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Chinese calendar:
Day of the Water Monkey
Month of the Earth Goat
Year of the Earth Dog 2018

Polarity of the Day: Yang
Polarity of the Month: Yin
Polarity of the Year: Yang
Lucky directions: West-South-West
Lucky colors: Green

 

 
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The Water Monkey is the most cunning of Monkeys.

His curiosity and talent are as well developed as his sensibility is extreme. Indeed, if the Water Monkey is funny, charming and manipulative as all monkeys can be, his intense emotions also allow him to work with instinct, for better or for worse. On a day of the Water Monkey, creative crafts as well as inspiration and new ideas are favored. Remember, however, that if creativity and dreams are connected, the world of production, marketing and sales of a new product depends on reality, with its ungrateful work and challenging failures, must never discourage you from always starting again. Success always comes to those who persevere against the winds and tides.

Today more than ever, you feel the soul of a conqueror of the impossible, a Christopher Columbus in search of gold and glory, whom no one seems to take seriously, for the time being… If you’re single, you feel perfectly capable of seducing a movie star. Who does not try anything has nothing, but be prepared to suffer disappointments. To conclude, during a Water Monkey’s day, it is above all to oneself that one must avoid lying.

Daily Energetic chart: Weak in Wood element
Birth's character and destiny (BaGua): The Great Possession
 

Killer Condiments: Spicy Mustard
 
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In honor of National Mustard Day on August 4th, I thought we should talk about and celebrate one of the popular condiments that is used in most Chinese restaurants: Spicy Mustard.

This popular condiment is typically served with appetizers like egg rolls or wonton strips and can bring a flare of flavor by adding some heat. This is done by mixing dry mustard powder with water, creating a chemical reaction that makes the sharp, hot taste. How does this all work. Here's the science to break it down.

Mustard seeds come from the mustard plant, a member of the cabbage family. They contain two sulphur compounds, myrosin, and sinigrin, as well as an enzyme, myrosinase. When the seeds are broken and water is added, the enzyme breaks down the sulphur compounds. The result is the sharp tasting oil that gives mustard its pungency and helps explain why the name mustard comes from the Latin words mustum (must) and ardens (burning).
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Want to try and make it yourself? Here's a simple recipe to spice up any of your dishes at home!

The Beauty of Take-Out
 
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Take out is one of the greatest inventions in the food industry and has brought so many fun flavors to so many people but where did it begin?

This concept of "take out" prepared meals can date back to antiquity times. It was very common in Ancient Greece and Rome for roadside stalls to sell food to passengers walking by. This can be seen in the ruins of Pompeii where archaeologists found a number of service like counters open toward the street to provide food to be taken away. They also saw that there was a lack of a kitchen like area in the homes of people who lived in Pompeii which could lead to believe that getting meals to take home was more common than not. This wasn't the only evidence. Places like Europe still to this day have several foods ranging from meat pies to tarts that can be purchased to go and enjoyed elsewhere. 

 
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Even with the popularity of other places and their take out/carry out foods nothing can compare to take out Chinese food.  I don't know if it's the dishes that seems so elaborate andd delicious or that it's just something that I don't regularly make but being able to purchase this food and bring it home to my house makes it not only special but also as a staple in our daily lives. It's something that has become a comfort to me. And don't get me wrong I love going out to eat as much as the next person but who doesn't love being able to bring some tasty food home and eat it on the couch while watching Netflix shows in the pjs with only their cats to judge them. 

Thank you take out gods by allowing us to enjoy a variety of foods that we couldn't even dare to dream could exist! I can't wait to order some Windchimes now and sit on my porch as I watch the sun go down. 

How do you like to enjoy your take out food? Also feel free to take pictures of where you enjoy your Windchimes meal and post them to our Facebook page! 

The Legend of Potstickers
 
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Potstickers are one of my favorite dishes. These simple, little fried pillows filled with meat leave you wanting more. Usually they are an appetizer and meant to share but sometimes you just want them all to yourself. How did these little dumplings become so popular and why are they so delicious? 

The Chinese have been enjoying these little treats since the Song Dynasty. No one knows the exact origin of how they were created but according to legend they were invented by a chef in China's Imperial Court who accidentally burnt a batch of dumplings after leaving them on the stove for too long. The dumplings were overcooked and burnt on the bottom but not on top. The Chef went with this mistake and said it was a new dish and was supposed to be served in this style, leading to the Potstickers we enjoy today. 

 
 

Typically, potstickers are made with a hot water dough that uses boiling water, giving the dough greater elasticity so it can hold it's shape. Though, if you are trying to make these at home you can usually pick up Gyoza or wonton wrappers to create a similar substitute. After they are made you want to fry them up and flip over with the brown side up. Then after they are finished and plated up you can use a variety of dipping sauces to bring out the delicious flavors of the pork inside. 

There are other types of potstickers from different regions of China but these fried delights are my favorite. Come into Windchimes today to taste them for yourself. And be prepared not to share!

Inspiring Foods: The History of Moo Shu
 
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Last week I decided to be adventurous and try a new dish at Windchimes. I searched through the menu as my mouth watered at all the delicious sounding food when I finally found what i wanted. I wanted the Moo Shu Chicken.

This stir fried dish served with your choice of meat with cabbage, bamboo shoots, carrots and egg in a plum sauce sounded really good. Though there was an interesting element that caught my attention and was the reason i wanted to try this dish out. It came with a pancake?! What did that mean? I had to try it and I was not disappointed.

Afterward I was curious about how this dish was created since a lot of the Chinese food comes from different regions that specialize in their own flavors or types of food. This dish comes from the northern Chinese origin originating from Shandong, a coastal province and appearing in the United States in the late 1960s. Typically the Moo Shu dish is created with pork tenderloin, cucumber, and scrambled eggs, stir fried in sesame or peanut oil together with mushrooms and minced ginger and garlic. As this dish grew popularity in the United States the chefs had to start to modify the recipe to use ingredients that are easier and more available in the states. This is why they started to use green cabbage, carrots, scallions and bean sprouts a lot more in the dish. Like most dishes that are popular there are a lot of different variations of them from restaurant to restaurant adding their own flavor and twist on it.

 
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My favorite adaptation in the pancake that is served with the dish. The pancake is a white tortilla-like wrapper made of flour and is used to hold all of the contents of the dish. It's basically eaten like a taco and there are even some Chinese restaurants that began serving Mexican style flour tortillas with the dish. I love the way that food has come to grow and adapt to their surroundings and the culture around them that is different then their own. It really illustrates the beauty of America and how we are a melting pot of so many different cultures. 

 

Daily Horoscope: May 8, 2018
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Chinese calendar:
Day of the Metal Ox
Month of the Fire Dagon
Year of the Earth Dog 2018

Polarity of the Day: Yin
Polarity of the Month: Yang
Polarity of the Year: Yang
Lucky directions: North-East
Lucky colors: Green

 

LIKE HIS PEERS, THE METAL OX IS A CONSERVATIVE, FOR WHOM WORK AND FAMILY ARE PARAMOUNT TO HIS PERSONAL WELL-BEING AND DEVELOPMENT.

 

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The Metal Ox is little talkative, preferring to express himself by concrete gestures rather than by speech. It is also when he acts of his own free will that the Metal Ox feels really happy and fulfilled. Indeed, while he hates to be given orders, he is always ready to serve others. A Metal Ox day is beneficial to the business world, especially if you’re an entrepreneur or if you run a department within your company.

Today, you’re able to use discernment and skillfully convince your interlocutors, even more since you won’t hesitate to wet your shirt in the process. In love, if you’ve been married for a long time or if you’ve been in a couple for a short period of time, a small symbolic gift (for example a rose or a bouquet of flowers) to your partner will only strengthen your union by the simplicity and elegance of your gesture.

Daily Energetic chart: Weak in Wood element
Birth's character and destiny (BaGua): Moulting