Menkiri means `noodle cutter’ in Japanese. The features of the menkiri make it essential when working with noodles. In order to get perfect even thin strips, the knife must be extremely sharp, the blade must extend to the end of the handle to cover the width of the dough, and the blade must sit completely flat against the cutting board. If there is any space between the blade and the cutting board, it will not cut the dough completely and will thus ruin the structure of the noodle.