You’ve probably heard of pan mee (or ban mian, literally ‘board noodles’), the popular Chinese noodle dish served in soup, with various condiments such as minced pork and anchovies. But did you know that chilli pan mee is a wholly Malaysian invention?
Chilli pan mee traces its roots to Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur in 1985—the brainchild of one Tan Kok Hong, proprietor of the now legendary Kin Kin Pan Mee restaurant. Tan initially sold regular soup pan mee, but noticed his patrons adding chillies to their dishes. After a lot of experimentation, the chilli pan mee that we know today was born. I think it’s an excellent example of how the Malaysian-Chinese diaspora have taken elements of local culture and blended it into their cuisine, birthing something unique altogether.
It has been ages since I last had a solid bowl of chilli pan mee. The cravings led the Hubs and I to DaMen Mall in USJ, where Super Kitchen Chilli Pan Mee has a small branch within the mall’s non-halal food court. I have tried the chain’s SS2 outlet and it is consistently good, so I was expecting the same from this outlet. Thankfully, it did not disappoint!
The Hubs and I both ordered the signature chilli pan mee, which came in a generous serving topped with fried anchovies, minced pork, fried shallots, lard, and a runny egg. The chilli flakes are served separately, so you can adjust your level of spiciness. The noodles were cooked al dente, and the runny egg yolk created that smooth, silky texture which bound all of the elements well together.
The Hubs loved their fried dumplings, which were fried fresh to order. The meat was moist and juicy, while the outside was crisp and fried to perfection.
Cold longan drinks to quench our thirst!
Damen is kind of a dead mall on weekdays, so when we got to the food court, it literally looked semi-abandoned lol. The stall was the only one open, there was no one else sitting in the section, and some of the lights were not even turned on. But I was satisfied with the food quality and freshness (something that restos with low traffic may struggle with)—and me being anti-social, a quiet environment to dine in was just perfect!
Prices are reasonable for the setting. I would even say they’re one of the more affordable options when you’re at DaMen.
SUPER KITCHEN CHILLI PAN MEE (DAMEN USJ)
L3, Damen Mall, No. 1, Persiaran Kewajipan, USJ 1, 47600 Subang Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.