Preparation / Directions:
This Singapore dish is a classic and, like all classics, it is superb. Serve it with plain rice.
Boil a large pot of water and drop in 4 green blue swimmers. Boil them rapidly for 4 minutes then tip the contents of the pot into a colander to drain. When cool enough to handle, chop crabs into quarters with a cleaver or large knife, leaving legs attached to body. With a hammer. gently crack the claws and areas of harder shell.
Put 3 teaspoons tamarind pulp to soak in 3/4 cup boiling water. Finely chop 2 onions, grate 5 cm piece fresh ginger, finely slice 2-3 Birdseye chiles (or to taste) and chop 3 green (spring) onions. Mix 2 teaspoons cornstarch with a little water.
In a large wok or pan, heat 3 tablespoons of oil and stir- fry onion, ginger and 2/3 of the chopped chiles for a couple of minutes. Add crab pieces and strained tamarind water, lower heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
Lift the crab out onto a serving dish and to the mixture in the wok add 3 teaspoons sugar and 2 of tomato paste. Stir, add dissolved cornstarch and stir again until the mixture thickens. Pour over the crab, garnish with the rest of the chiles and the spring onions and serve.