Black Pepper Crab


In Australia the Malay-inflected chilli crab from Singapore’s south east coast has become a household name, known to most as ‘Singapore crab’. But there’s a whole other tranche of cooking that finds its home in Singapore, a alternative cuisine has a crab recipe going one step further.

  • 2 large mud crabs
  • 1 cup cornflour
  • vegetable oil, to deep-fry
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12cm piece ginger, cut into fine batons
  • 4 eschalots, sliced
  • 16 curry leaves
  • 4 long red chillies, finely sliced
  • 1 Tbsp black peppercorns, cracked
  • 1 Tbsp dried prawns, soaked and chopped
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 4 cups baby spinach leaves
  • ¼ bunch coriander leaves

1 Clean the crabs and chop into pieces. Dust with cornflour then fry in hot (180°C) vegetable oil until the crabs turn red. Set aside.

2 Sauté the garlic, ginger, eschalots, curry leaves, chillies, peppercorns and prawns in butter in a large wok. Mix in the crab, then pour in the soy sauce, sugar and stock. Simmer for 8 minutes until the crab is cooked through. Stir in the spinach and coriander.