[Photograph: Robyn Lee]

I love Chinese food all of stripes. Deeply spiced Sichuan specialities, complex Muslim-influenced Northern fare, and sprightly steamed Cantonese dim sum all have their place in my heart. I'll gladly travel for quality Chinese, dragging caravans of pals to the depths of Chinatown to sit in a DOH-defying basement stall and cook hotpot. Heck, I even studied abroad in Shanghai in college, eating mystery meat steamed buns off the street for breakfast every day.

But sometimes—usually on Sunday nights, when my I'm winding down the weekend and catching up on Game of Thrones—I don't want that kind of Chinese. I want the Chinese takeout of my Midwestern childhood, complete with doughy fried dumplings, neon-orange sesame chicken, and overcooked lo mein. And I want it to come with fortune cookies, too. I don't see any shame in this—there are different kinds of Chinese food, and far be it from me to deny the pleasures of a perfect, crisp egg roll.

So there you have it: I'm a sucker for fried dumplings, egg rolls, lo mein and sesame chicken. Also, sometimes, hot and sour soup. What about you? What's your go-to Chinese takeout order?

About the author: Jamie Feldmar is a noodle aficionado, barbecue lover, and the managing editor of Serious Eats. You can follow her on Twitter at @jfeldmar.


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