Chilli mudcrab recipe

  • Step 1
  • Put the crabs to sleep in the freezer for an hour.
  • Step 2.
  • Lift the flap at the bottom and remove the top shell. The gills are finger-like and grey. Remove them. To remove any gunk, rinse the crabs under cold water.
  • Step 3
  • Cut each crab into thirds using a heavy knife. The back of the blade can be used to crack the legs and claws to allow the sauce to seep into the crab while it cooks.
  • Step 4.
  • Combine the rice wine, sugar, tamarind sauce, fish sauce, and 60ml (1/4 cup) in a large bowl. Stir well to combine.
  • Step 5
  • Heat oil in a large, heavy wok on high heat. Fry the garlic and chili for 30 seconds. Add the crabs and mix everything. Add the tomato mixture, and coat the crabs well. Cover the pan with a lid and reduce the heat. Cook for 5 minutes. Shake the crabs and remove the lid. Replace the cap and continue cooking for five more minutes or until the shells are orange and the meat is cooked.
  • Step 6
  • Spread the coriander over the crabs in a large bowl. To clean sticky hands, serve with plenty of napkins and small bowls of lemon and water.


  • Live mud crabs 2 x 1 kg
  • 140g (1/2 cup) tomato sauce
  • White sugar, 55g (or 1/4 cup).
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp tamarind concentrate
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) Chinese rice wine (Shaoxing)
  • Vegetable oil 80ml (3/cup)
  • Eight cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • Finely chop one long red chili.
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • Lemon wedges for finger bowls


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