Easy Peasy Singapore Chilli Crab Recipe – Adapted For Those Living Overseas!
This is an adapted but delicious version of Singapore Chilli Crab. It is sweet and zesty and most important of all, a real crowd pleaser! It is also not difficult to prepare. It is important to construct your mise en place ahead of time because once you start cooking, it is very quick and the dish should be served right away. Make sure you use live crabs (or very fresh chilled lobsters, crayfish or huge prawns) to enjoy this dish at its very best. You can serve with Sandwich Bread, French Loaf or the traditional Mantou (Chinese buns – steamed or deep-fried) to mop up all the sauce.
Easy Peasy Singapore Chilli Crab Recipe
1kg live Sri Lankan Crabs or any Mud Crabs.
4-6 cloves Garlic, pound coarsely by pestle and mortar or minced by cleaver.
1 tbsp Salted Soybeans, mashed into paste (Taucheo).
½ inch fresh Ginger, thinly sliced and julienned (if you do not use this ingredient often, omit it. No point buying a big rhizome or you can buy a small tube of the ginger paste if that’s available).
3 tbsp Vegetable Oil.
Preparing the crab:
1. We normally freeze the crab till it goes into very deep hibernation or drive a chopstick/skewer into the middle of its underbelly. When the crab has stopped struggling (dead), rinse well under the tap.
2. Open the shell and run a gentle rinse over the roe.
3. Break claws/pincers away from the body and crack lightly with a pestle.
4. Trim the gills from the body and cut the body into 2. If the body is huge, you may cut the halves into two again.
½-1 tbsp Light Soy Sauce, add to taste.
2-3 tbsp Sugar, to taste (add 1 spoonful at a time and taste test, but should lean very slightly on the sweet side).
5-8 large fresh red Chillies (remove seeds) pounded into a fine paste or 3 tbsp bottled Garlic Chilli Sauce (Maggi or Sin Sin Brand, if possible).
6 tbsp Tomato Ketchup (Maggie Brand, if possible).
1 cup Water (250ml).
½-1½ tbsp Tapioca Flour/Starch or Cornstarch mixed together with 3-5 tbsp water (flour solution, depending on how thick you want the gravy.).
1-2 Eggs, beaten.
2 stalks Scallions, cut into 2-inch (5cm) lengths for garnishing.
1 big sprig of Cilantro, cut into 2cm for garnishing.
Juice of 1 small Calamansi Lime, remove seeds, optional.
1. Heat oil in a wok over medium high heat and stir-fry ginger until fragrant.
2. Lower heat to medium and add garlic. Stir-fry until opaque, careful not burnt.
3. Add mashed salted soybeans and stir-fry for 1-2 minutes.
4. Pour in seasoning ingredients and stir for 2 minutes.
5. Add crabs and stir. Add ¼ cup water and cook covered with wok lid for 2 minutes.
6. Add remaining water. Cook for 5 minutes over high heat without cover.
7. When crabs turned red, they are cooked; add flour solution and stir well till sauce thickens.
8. Pour the beaten eggs into the wok from high to create egg ribbons. Cook till the desired consistency of the gravy you like. Be careful here as the longer you cook, the eggs become scrambled. Keep in mind that the eggs will continue to cook with the latent heat. What we want to achieve here is smooth silky gravy. Some people like their eggs thoroughly cooked so it is up to you.
9. Add the scallions and give it a quick stir. Turn off the heat. If using the juice of calamansi lime, stir in after you’ve turned off the fire.
10. Dish out into a shallow bowl and garnish with chopped cilantro. Serve immediately with buns.
Enjoy with a glass of chilled Chablis