Most people associate Ban Mian (板面) with comfort and warmth.
Ban Mian is a popular Chinese noodle dish, consisting of handmade noodles served with a rich, pork-based broth, and ingredients such as minced pork, spinach, and a runny egg, topped with fried ikan bilis.
Ban Mian means “board noodle” or “block noodle” and references the original way of creating the noodles from dough, which involved tearing off a piece and rolling it out, leaving an irregularly shaped rectangle or square noodle.
As simple as they look, Ban Mian requires much practice to get right. The best ones are soft, slippery yet incredibly chewy at the same time. Skill is important in these hand-pulled noodles - grab too much and one would get chunks that are too doughy, but pull it too much and the noodles would end up too thin with no springiness.
There is also the dry chilli version, which generally has the same ingredients, but also comes with dry chilli flakes and dark sauce.
Between the chilli Ban Mian and soup version, which do you prefer?