This is an indispensable utensil in our Foochow kitchen.
Most important utensil when you have to cook a lot of mi hoon, or soh mien, especially during the confinement of one month.
There can be so much noodle making in the kitchen that you may need more than two pairs of good hands.
How clever were our ancestors for making this.
My maternal grandmother was best in drying bundles of soh mien in the sun. When it was time to stor the noodles in the tin, she would handle the dried bundles carefully and meticulously.
All the small bits broken off from the long noodles were collected by hand from under the big drying flat tray, kept in a smaller tin. These are the "seconds" shich she could boil and eat. Sometimes she would break off more noodles from the bundles, so that she had more broken bits for her tin.
She would boil the water in a pot and then she would carefully lower the small broken bits of soh mien in this kind of ladle. That would really prevent any wastage. When the noodles floated, she just lifted the perforated lady and drain the noodles and pour them right into the waiting bowl.
A bit of lard and a few drops of soy sauce would be the sauce for her soh mien. Gan Ban Soh Mien.
Well , you see she was a child bride.