Chile Crabs

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Chile CrabsRecipe
Photo: Darren Soh; Styling: Cindy Barr
This iconic dish is a favorite in Singapore, but traditionally, the crabs are fried in the chile mixture. Here we offer a healthier grilled version. Place each crab on its back, and snip off the small pointed flap at the lower part of the shell known as the apron; remove the fat beneath the apron. Rinse the entire crab well, and pat dry. Once cleaned, pop the crabs in the freezer for 30 minutes before marinating them.
4 servings (serving size: 2 crabs, 1/2 onion, and 1 tablespoon sauce)


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10 fresh red Thai chiles, stemmed
9 large garlic cloves
1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup ketchup
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salted bean paste or red miso
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
8 (8-ounce) fresh blue crabs, rinsed and aprons removed (see recipe note above)
2 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
1 bunch fresh cilantro (optional)


1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a food processor; process until finely ground. Stir in ketchup, sugar, bean paste, and juice. Place crabs in a large bowl; top with 1/2 cup chile mixture. Toss to combine. Set remaining chile mixture aside. Marinate in refrigerator 1 hour.

2. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

3. Remove crabs from marinade; discard marinade. Arrange crabs, shell sides up, on grill rack; grill 12 minutes or until shells turn red. Serve with remaining chile sauce and onions. Garnish with cilantro, if desired.

Wine note: Always a good bet with seafood, gewürztraminer pairs perfectly with Chile Crabs. The lychee and spice flavors of Chateau Ste. Michelle Gewürztraminer Columbia Valley 2008 ($10), from Washington, complement the Asian flavors, while the wine's slight sweet apple and pear fruit counter the heat. --Jeffery Lindenmuth

Created date

June 2010

Nutritional Information

Calories 158
Fat 2 g
Satfat 0.3 g
Monofat 0.3 g
Polyfat 0.8 g
Protein 20.9 g
Carbohydrate 14.7 g
Fiber 1.1 g
Cholesterol 96 mg
Iron 1.5 mg
Sodium 638 mg
Calcium 133 mg