[Halal] Oh baby, I’m a (Kacang) ful for you!
In our quest for the best Laksa Johor in KL, we visited Wannah’s at Taman Tun Dr Ismail.
Wannah’s TTDI was recommended by one of our favourite Instagram foodie Andy Tham.
Wannah’s is a hidden gem in TTDI.
This spot is actually located within the Badan Kebajikan TTDI (Bakti TTDI) compound just behind the At-Taqwa Mosque.
This humble spot started operations in the middle of the pandemic in 2020, but its humble beginnings started many years ago when its founder, Sharifah Amnah (whose business is named after) started catering food from their home.
Warm service at Wannah’s TTDI
We were very fortunate to visit Wannah’s on a Saturday afternoon.
The restaurant is usually packed in the mornings as regulars would throng the spot for their fix of Johorean fares such as Laksa Johor, Kacang Ful, and Soto Ayam.
When we arrived at 1.30 pm, the place was mostly empty – and we received a very warm welcome from Wannah and her husband, Syed Putra (who introduced himself as Uncle Hensem).
Authentic Johorean fare…
In our very long (and enjoyable) chat with Wannah and Uncle Hensem, we learned that both of them are native Johoreans.
Wannah first started cooking from her humble home, when the couple decided to open this humble stall after Uncle Hensem’s retirement.
Hence, Wannah’s offers some of the most home-cooked and authentic Johorean dishes.
As an example, Wannah insisted that the original Laksa Johor recipe only contains 10 key ingredients with ikan parang (wolf herring fish) and kerisik as the core.
We’ve enjoyed iterations of Laksa Johor that used ikan tenggiri and bunga kantan in its gravy – so we were game to try this!
… and more classic Malay dishes
However, Wannah offers more than just Johor dishes.
Other popular items on their menu include Briyani Johor Ayam and Kambing (only available on Fridays), Nasi Dagang (only on Sundays), Soto Ayam, Nasi Lemak Basmathi, Lempeng Kelapa, and Shakshuka.
At RM14 per plate, Wannah’s Laksa Johor is one of the more authentic offerings in TTDI.
The gravy is slightly more diluted than what we are used to but we enjoyed the lovely complexity of the flavours with flakiness from the kerisik and ikan parang.
Do note that the gravy is on the spicier side, but the squeeze of lime juice and garnishings helped to temper the heat.
Delicious Kacang Ful
However, our favourite dishes at Wannah’s had to be the Kacang Ful (RM10) and Nasi Tomato & Ayam Masak Merah (RM15).
A clarification: the local dish is called Kacang Pool as it was inspired by the Ful Medames dish in the Middle East, but includes new ingredients such as baked beans and minced meat in the recipe.
What truly sets Wannah’s dish apart is the liberal use of imported fava beans in the dish – so we could taste the nutty flavour of the beans.
The spices also blended well together with the cut chillies and raw onions, and we particularly enjoyed the fried egg with a runny yolk.
The accompanying toast was outstanding as well – thick, fluffy and generously slathered with butter for the perfect dip into the stew.
Nasi Tomato & Ayam Masak Merah
Available on Saturdays, Mondays and Tuesdays, the Nasi Tomato & Ayam Masak Merah (RM15) was another outstanding dish.
The rice here is one of the best we’ve eaten – super fluffy and packed with flavour!
While most Nasi Tomato tends to be too tangy or sweet, Wannah’s offering has the perfect balance of sourness, savoury and umami.
The accompanying acar (vegetables) also had a balanced flavour profile (not too sour), and the Ayam Masak Merah was satisfyingly tender and well-marinated.
Taster: Nasi Lemak Basmathi and Lontong Kering
Uncle Hensem was kind enough to let us sample a bit of Wannah’s excellent Nasi Lemak Basmathi and Lontong Kering (a recent addition to its menu).
Here’s our unbiased take: the Nasi Lemak was superbly fragrant with enough coconut milk taste (and a bit of saltiness) and we enjoyed the lovely sambal (not too sweet, with a good belacan hit!).
Another classic Johorean dish, the Lontong Kering was also delicious – with the Rendang Daging (tender!) and Serunding Kelapa as our favourite components.
As you can probably tell, we really enjoyed the food and company at Wannah’s.
While we prefer the Laksa Johor at Siti Li (not the most authentic but suited our tastebuds), the Kacang Ful and Nasi Tomato here are the best we’ve ever eaten.
For our next trip, we will try the Nasi Briyani, Soto Ayam and Lontong Kering.
Wannah’s is available on a few food delivery apps, but you can also arrange for delivery/big orders via Whatsapp. See their contact numbers below.
Address: Lot 1, Badan Kebajikan Islam (BAKTI TTDI), Behind At-Taqwa Mosque, 3849, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Kuala Lumpur
Hours: 8am-3pm Daily (Closed on Thursdays)
Phone: 019-770 7070 (Syed Putra), 019-7717171 (Wannah)
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More recommendations in TTDI
Looking for more Johorean cuisine in KL? Check out these spots below:
Food recommendations in Johor
Taking a trip to the state of Johor? Check out our recommendations here: