KEK (Keng Eng Kee) @ 200 Pandan Gardens

Keng Eng Kee (KEK) is fast becoming a brand for tze char. Mention those 3 words and people will automatically associate it with authentic local delights served in the modest food centre at Bukit Merah. Fast forward to more than 30 years later, since its foray into our hawker culinary scene, the third generation of KEK has now introduced a modern dining experience as they cater to the younger crowd with their newest outlet at Pandan Gardens.

Serving up an assortment of traditional and mod “c” dishes on their menu, KEK offers novel creations such as Chilli Soft Shell Spaghetti and Crispy Fish Skin with Salted Egg, and classic mainstays of Coffee Pork Ribs and Salted Egg Crab which have been brought over from their flagship stall. Prices range from $6-$30 with no added service charge.

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I brought my family down on a Sunday and the place was filled- mostly with three generation families. We were lucky enough to get a table even though we did not make any reservation but the groups that came after us had a bit of a waiting time. Nonetheless, we placed our orders and the food arrived promptly and in decent portions.

First up was the Salted Egg Yolk Crab Spaghetti $15, an item that I came all the way to Pandan Gardens for and after getting a bite of that wok-fried pasta tossed in a creamy yet grainy textured sauce, I was extremely pleased. Somewhat similar to the well-loved Carbonara, this one however had salty notes to complement the richness of the salted egg yolk. Topped with crunchy pieces of deep-fried soft shell crab and fried with fresh curry leaves, this dish had both balance and depth of flavour.

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Another pasta option would be the Prawn Paste Chicken Spaghetti $10– which is the answer to individual diners who wish to order har cheong gai but cannot finish a whole plate by themselves. Accompanied with the same wok-fried spaghetti noodles as the previous dish, this sauce had instead sourish savoury notes and hints of spiciness which whetted our appetite. Wings too were rightfully coated with a thin layer of crispy crust which contrasted so effortlessly with the juiciness of the interior.

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Fans of KEK would be delighted to note that their famous Moonlight Hor Fun $6/$12 is also available here. The highlight was of course that glistening egg yolk lying so precariously atop the flat noodles that was brimming with fresh prawns and squid. Complete with the quintessential “wok-hei” flavour, the magic happens when you break that runny yolk and allow it to coat the noodles for a charming buttery finish.

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Veggies here do look a little different than the usual varieties that we are used to. We ordered the Kai Lan with Dragon Beard $8/$16, Lotus Heaven Macadamia $10/$20 and KEK Crunchy Greenery $8/$16. One thing is for sure, they all come dressed with crunchy pieces of crackers or deep fried slices of lotus roots which are endearingly addictive. But if you are more of a traditionalist who just wants some greens on your table, your safest bet would probably be the Kai Lan.

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Overall, I do like KEK @ Pandan Gardens very much. The food is hip yet tasty without being too gimmicky while the atmosphere retains the authenticity of a tze char stall with the comfort of air-conditioning. An ideal place for large family gatherings where both the young and old will find something that they will enjoy.

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200 Pandan Gardens
Singapore 609336
Tel: +65 66943044

Opening hrs:
1130am – 230pm
5pm – 10pm


One Response to KEK (Keng Eng Kee) @ 200 Pandan Gardens

  1. SG Food on Foot says:

    Oh you went down all the way to try it. Great to know you enjoyed the food there.

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