[Halal] Is this the best Laksa Johor in KL?
For years, our friends have recommended Siti Li Dining to serve one of the best Laksa Johor in KL.
Ming visited this restaurant many years ago and remembered it being delicious.
We brought our mom here to try the famous dish from the Southern Peninsular state, and other signature Malaysian dishes.
Siti Li Dining in Bukit Damansara
Located in the upscale neighborhood of Bukit Damansara, Siti Li is a one-stop destination for traditional Malay dishes such as Laksa Johor, Soto Selatan, Nasi Lemak, and Nasi Kahwin Koboi.
While Malay restaurants are a dime a dozen in our beautiful country, Siti Li sets itself apart by using only the best ingredients for its dishes and making all of the spices from scratch. For example, Siti Li uses high-quality parboiled Basmati rice for their rice dishes and Gula Melaka sourced from Batam.
According to the founders, Siti Kadir and Shareen Ramli (combined to make the name Siti Li) – the recipes were passed on from their mothers, and showcase classic Malay specialty dishes from days of yore.
Nevertheless, the space here is chic and makes for a very comfortable dining experience for families and friends.
Cute little cekodok
Our friends who frequent Siti Li regularly only have good words for their Cekodok (banana fritters).
While Siti Li offers the regular-sized Cekodok you can find at most shops, their specialty here is the Cekodok Comel Siti Li (RM16 for 20 pieces).
Compared to the usual Cekodok, these morsels are made smaller with a diameter of 20 sen coins.
We thought this was a brilliant idea – as it results in a more crisp surface area and insides that are evenly cooked.
The banana fritters were freshly fried, so they arrived warm at our table. We could taste the real banana flavours, and the use of palm sugar gives it a slight caramelisation vs. regular white sugar.
Nasi Kahwin Campur
For mains, we ordered the Nasi Kahwin Campur (RM48).
Literally called ‘wedding rice’, Nasi Kahwin is a dish typically served during Malay wedding feasts (kenduri), and cooked with spices and ghee (which gives the rice its yellow hue).
Siti Li’s rice is cooked using parboiled Basmathi rice and cooked with Jumbo raisins, toasted almonds, and cashews.
We opted for the Campur option, which comes with a serving of Beef Rendang, Ayam Masak Merah, Acar Rampai, and Papadom.
Rendang and Ayam Masak Merah
The rice was fragrant and fluffy, with a lovely sweetness from the raisins.
We found the Rendang to be sufficiently tender and reminded us of Minang-style rendang with the generous use of kerisik (toasted coconut flakes) and daun kunyit (tumeric leaves).
The Ayam Masak Merah was lovely, and we thought it had nice caramelisation with the right amount of savoury sweetness.
Finally, the house special Laksa Johor (RM33)!
Compared to most Laksa Johor dishes where the gravy is served on top of spaghetti, Siti Li is really generous with the portion here with the noodles served in a deep bowl of gravy.
However, the gravy did not lose its thickness and it was bursting with flavours and texture from the addition of threadfin and herring fishes. The gravy was flaky and flavourful thanks to the generous amount of kerisik used, and we appreciated the prominent fragrance of bunga kantan (torched ginger flower) and daun kunyit.
A squeeze of lime helped to jazz up the gravy, and the accompanying chilli gives a nice belacan (fermented shrimp paste) spicy kick.
Overall, we enjoyed the food here. While the Laksa Johor is not the most traditional in terms of portion and presentation, it was really delicious and a bang for the buck.
We also enjoyed the Cekodok very much, while the Nasi Kahwin is a good representation of the dish served in traditional Malay wedding celebrations.
Siti Li Dining
Address: 15, Jalan Setiakasih 5, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur
Hours: 11am-6pm Daily (Closed on Sundays)
Phone: 011-3906 6078
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