In addition to all the re-runs we had last week, we also went to P.F. Changs and had the Chang's spicy chicken ("Lightly dusted and stir-fried in a sweet Sichuan sauce", according to the menu). Very good, tangy and spicy warm and we'll have it again. It was a nice change from our usual at chang's, spicy ground chicken and eggplant, especially since we knew we'd be making our own version at home later in the week.
We brought his Hold-Stix with us (we never go for Chinese without them), but this time he used the real thing, the chopsticks provided at the restaurant, and did quite well even with those little hands of his. Of course, he had his usual Garlic Noodles, but he liked our spicy chicken, too, and was able to pick them up handily. He never ceases to amaze me!
If you're having trouble with chopsticks yourself, there are several good "how to use chopsticks" guides on these here internets, like this one and this one. These chopstick FAQ's also have some other interesting information, like these warnings:
- Avoid sticking your chopsticks into your rice straight down. It's bad manners, because it resembles the incense that family members burn to mourn a dead relative. When done put chopsticks over bowl and lay them flat.
- Avoid passing food with the chopsticks. As in the previous warning, this resembles a section of the traditional Japanese funeral, where the family members pass bones using chopsticks. Instead, when passing food, place the food on an intermediary plate, preferably using a serving utensil or, if none is provided, turn your chopsticks around so the ends that have not been in your mouth touch the food, then give the plate to whomever.
- Chinese etiquette says that you may lift your personal rice bowl close to your mouth with one hand, as you use the chopsticks to push the rice into your mouth. However, Korean etiquette says this is very bad form! Be aware of the people you are eating with, and what the customs are.
- Also do not cross your chopsticks, because in Chinese cultures this is a symbol for death. Always lay them parallel to each other.