Singapore-Style Chili Crab
Chili crab is a Singaporean seafood dish. It is crab stir-fried with ginger, garlic, shallots and chilies in a thick, sweet and savory egg and tomato sauce. Despite its name, the dish is not very spicy. Mud crabs are typically used in this dish but I didn’t use mud crabs. I didn’t even use crab. Instead, I used lobster. The dish still came out super delicious, as if I were in a hawker stall in Singapore. Just remember to wear a bib as it can get super messy. Recipe below. Enjoy!
Singapore-Style Chilli Crab
- 2-3 lbs whole lobster/crabs
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3-6 fresh chili peppers (slice thin)
- 1 thumb-size piece ginger (peel and chop finely)
- 1 large shallot (peel and finely chop)
- 1 whole head garlic (about 8 cloves)
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon soybean paste
- 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
- 4 tablespoons tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon tapioca starch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro/green onions (optional)
Lobster / Crab
- When working with any seafood, make sure to clean it properly to get rid of the strong fishy smell. Get into all the nooks and cranny with a small brush and rinse several times. Cut crab or lobster into bite-size pieces. If there's any roe, scoop it out and set aside. The roe would be a great addition to the sauce mixture below if preferred.
- In a large wok with a lid, heat up vegetable oil on medium high. Add all the aromatics in once (chili peppers, ginger, shallot and garlic) and saute until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes).
- To the wok, add water, soybean paste, sugar, tomato sauce and salt. Add roe here if there's any. Mix until combined.
- Add crab/lobster. Cover the wok with a lid and simmer on medium-high for 10 minutes. Occasionally toss to cover lobster/crab in sauce.
- After 10 minutes, remove lid. In a small bowl, mix together tapioca starch with cold water until completely dissolved. Add this slurry mixture to the wok and simmer on medium-high without lid until sauce thickens.
- Add beaten eggs and cook for 2-3 more minutes. Transfer crab/lobster to a large serving platter and garnish with chopped cilantro or green onions (optional). Serve by itself or with steamed rice or steamed buns for a full meal.