Chilli crab


  • 4 × 300 g (10 oz) raw (uncooked) crabs, such as blue swimmer, dungeness or redrock
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 small red chillies, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
  • 4 spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced
  • ½ cup (15 g) fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1 long red chilli, seeded and thinly sliced, to garnish
  • steamed rice, to serve
  • ½ cup (125 ml) salt–reduced fish, chicken or vegetable stock
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) tomato sauce (ketchup)
  • 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) shaoxing rice wine
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar


  1. Prepare the crabs by lifting the flap under the crab’s body with your thumb and discard.
  2. On the side opposite the eyes, insert your fingers and thumb between the top and bottom shells.
  3. Pull off the top shell and discard.
  4. Remove and discard the spongy, finger–like white gills on either side of the crab’s body.
  5. Cut the body into quarters.
  6. To make the chilli sauce, combine all of the ingredients together in a bowl.
  7. Heat the oil in a large wok over medium–high heat and stir–fry the crabs for 6–7 minutes, tossing occasionally so they cook evenly.
  8. Add the garlic, chilli and ginger, and stir–fry for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
  9. Add the chilli sauce and stir–fry for 3–4 minutes, or until the sauce boils and thickens slightly and the crabmeat turns white.
  10. Add the spring onion and coriander, reserving some for garnish.
  11. Taste and add salt if necessary.
  12. Serve the crab immediately, garnished with the remaining spring onion, coriander and chilli, with steamed rice on the side.

Serves 4
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 15 minutes


Source: Low Fat No Fat Asian Cooking
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