Singapore Chile Crab

Course : Seafoods
Serves: 4
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4 large blue crabs
3 teaspoons tamarind pulp
3/4 cup boiling water
2 medium chopped onions
1 piece fresh ginger -- 5 cm
2 medium Birdseye chiles -- up to 3
3 medium green onions -- chopped
2 teaspoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons oil
3 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons tomato paste

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.

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