[Johor Bahru] Singaporeans love to travel to JB for a taste of some of the “forgotten food” – flavours that bring back memories of the past.
A friend who frequently travels across the Causeway highly recommended Tan Kee Cathay Laksa 陈记国泰辣沙, located within Shang Ji Coffee Shop.
Named after the former Cathay cinema that used to be at the location of the current customs building, Tan Kee Cathay Laksa is certainly a stall with history and heritage.
It has been around for more than 4 decades, and the ambience was similar to other coffeeshops one would find in Singapore during my growing up years.
There are a number of “Cathay Laksa” around, but my friend told me this is one of the most authentic-tasting.
Tan Kee Cathay Laksa specialises in a style of Johor Laksa, which is similar to the Nyonya Laksa commonly found in Singapore in that they are both coconut milk based.
However, Cathay Laksa uses an anchovy as the base, and it is also not as thick or rich – and you can almost drink the appetising gravy up like soup.
The Laksa comes in bowls at RM7 (SGD2.30) each, with each bowl being served with a generous serving of fried tofu, fried handmade fishballs, crispy tofu skin and freshly shucked cockles.
Many of the components of the laksa are prepared from scratch daily, and even the cockles are shucked fresh by the two stall owners.
The two ingredients that stand out were the fish balls hand-made with Ikan Parang (wolf herring) fried till crispy and bouncy; and the tofu skin which would soak up some of the goodness of the gravy.
The gravy was flavourful yet not overly rich, coming in generous portions for that price. Plus, the owners are always very friendly and cheery even after so many years of manning the stall.
Tan Kee Cathay Laksa 陈记国泰辣沙
149, Jalan Lumba Kuda, Bukit Chagar, 80300 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +60 17 790 6910
Opening Hours: 8am – 3pm (Mon – Sun). Closed Mon
Google Maps – Tan Kee Cathay Laksa
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