Sandwiched between Broadway Plaza and the Masjid Al-Muttaqin, Keat Lim Vegetarian Food is located directly opposite the Ang Mo Kio Park McDonalds. It unflinchingly stares Ronald in the face, juxtaposing local hawker stall with global fast food chain, fresh vegetables with processed meat, David with Goliath, good with… I think you get the picture.
Keat Lim is a vegetarian stall that boasts a large kitchen, autonomous payment counter and wide-ranging menu. I actually found the menu quite limited insofar as most of the dishes tended to be variations on a theme. Such variations involved choosing between different mock meats and sauces; a semblance of choice where it doesn’t really exist. But if that’s what it takes to keep the punters happy, so be it.
Keat Lim Vegetarian Food
#01-4206, Block 728 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6
Open 11:00-21:45 daily
For the seat meal, you can select which mock meat (fish, pork, chicken, squid, or beancurd) and sauce (sambal, sweet & sour, black bean, kung pao, black pepper) you would like to go with your serving of rice and veggies. A bit silly if you ask me, as the mock “chicken” resembled its meatier namesake in name alone, but anyway… Actually the chicken was one of the best parts of the dish, being crisp on the outside but spongey on the inside. The vegetables (celery, black fungus, mushroom, carrot and red chilli) were fresh and crunchy, but the sauce was a complete washout. Bland and watery, it lacked any sort of flavour.
Served sizzling hot, the beancurd comes in either regular (SGD 8.00) or large (SGD 12.00) sizes. The slabs of tofu were substantial, and had a deep-fried exterior and soft, silken tofu-like interior. The vegetables (celery, red chilli, sugar snap peas, carrot, mushroom, babycorn, cauliflower) were also fresh and tasty. But once again, the sauce let this dish down. To my surprise it was sweet and spicy (the sweetness was dominant). The flavours were strong but superficial; they did not evolve in the mouth, nor did they linger on the tongue. The Hungry Ang Mo called the sauce of this dish “good, but nothing exceptional”; I would omit the “good” and stick to “nothing exceptional”.
I found Keat Lim to be a little deceptive. It provides a lot of options, but limited quality. Whilst the vegetables were colourful, crunchy and fresh, it was the sauces that were the Achilles’ heels of both of the dishes I tried. Overall, nothing special.
Hungry Ang Mo’s review