Fried Rice is an Invasive Species (and other thoughts on Chinese food)

Last week our family ordered Chinese take-out, and it struck me that I've never yet written about Chinese food on this blog.  Not once!

That's about to be rectified.

On mess:  Like taco night (another family favorite), Chinese take-out night excels in its mess-making capacity.  How, exactly, does fried rice end up underneath the toaster and scattered on the bathroom floor after a meal?  Does it attach itself to our clothing like burrs, traveling through the house like an invasive species?  Do my children pocket small handfuls of it, anticipating that they might need a stash of edible confetti?  How do cultures who subsist primarily on rice-based diets do this?

On water chestnuts:  You're either going to love or hate water chestnuts.  There's really no middle ground here.

On duck sauce:  If you order egg rolls but forget to request duck sauce, the entire meal will be tinged with disappointment.  Contrary to what your five-year-old will suggest, dipping your egg roll in sweet and sour sauce is just not the same.  (Besides, she's the kid who once combined chicken with grape jelly and declared it to be delicious, so you already know not to trust her.)

On leftover rice:  It's a given that you'll have an uneven entre-to-rice ratio, with the rice winning out.  I often pretend that I'll do something resourceful with that one tightly-packed extra container of white rice during an upcoming meal, but inevitably, it ends up migrating to the back of the refrigerator and getting pitched later in the week.

On fortune cookies:  Even if you're no longer hungry, you'll still eat the fortune cookie.  Even if you don't put credence in it, you'll still read the fortune.  Even if you can't pronounce the "Learn Chinese" phrase on the back of the fortune, you'll still try it out for your husband.

医药 Yīyào.  I just said medicine!  Medicine!

He won't be impressed.

On mess (again):  Despite the fact that you've swept multiple times, a week later a few rogue pieces of dried rice will still be congregating in a corner of your kitchen floor.  It's okay.  The sight of them just might spark a blog post.

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  1. We always run out of the rice first! (Followed swiftly by the shrimp and baby corn in whatever dishes they are in.) Water chestnuts, onions, and mushrooms are usually what lingers at this household since only a few (smart) people care for them.

  2. Love this! We love our Chinese food too... rice is so EASY to sweep up if you have a bucket of sand to throw on the floor with it. Otherwise the stuff is AWFUL to clean up.

    Last Sunday I had Chinese food and my fortune cookie had SIX fortunes. A lot of surprises, gifts, friendships, travel, and rewards should be coming my way. Any day now. Just waiting. Yup. Soon.

    Thanks for writing about Chinese food. Now I want some.

  3. SIX fortunes! That's pretty awesome! Tell me the truth.... have you ever actually thrown a bucket of sand on the floor with the rice? :)

  4. Our families should eat together, then, because you could have our leftover rice and baby corn and I could steal your leftover water chestnuts, onions, and mushrooms. Win-win!

  5. I have! When I worked in child care, I used to do it all the time. I would never do it in my own home though.

  6. That's sounds like a perfect solution!


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