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Photo by: Photo: Darren Soh; Styling: Cindy Barr

Chile Crabs

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.

  • Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 crabs, 1/2 onion, and 1 tablespoon sauce)

Ingredients

  • 10 none fresh red Thai chiles, stemmed
  • 9 none large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 none 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 none (8-ounce) fresh blue crabs, rinsed and aprons removed (see recipe note above)
  • 2 none spring onions, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 none bunch fresh cilantro (optional)

Preparation

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

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 158none
  • Fat: 2g
  • Saturated fat: 0.3g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 0.3g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.8g
  • Protein: 20.9g
  • Carbohydrate: 14.7g
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Cholesterol: 96mg
  • Iron: 1.5mg
  • Sodium: 638mg
  • Calcium: 133mg
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Chile Crabs Recipe

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