This ain’t your typical Dungeness crab. This beautiful crustacean is Chili Crab, sometimes known as Pepper Crab.
Singapore is known for Chili crab and it is exactly what it sounds like. Take your typical Asian chili sauce, thicken it up mostly with ketchup and you have this sweet/slightly spicy tangy sauce that is ladled over an entire cooked crab. Different restaurants have their spin on the chili sauce some a bit sweeter, others a bit spicier. The crab itself is a Sri Lankan very thick shelled and at times hairy and piping hot as it gets set on the table. The chili “soup” is to be sopped up with crab meat and fried bread.
It may be lesser known outside of Singapore, but there is also a Pepper Crab. This pepper sauce is based on ground black pepper and is less sweet and more almost smoky. I LOVE black pepper crab. In fact, I am on the hunt for the perfect black pepper sauce to import to the US. The traditional pepper beef and chicken that is so often found in American Chinese restaurants doesn’t have the depth of flavor I’ve found in Singapore. You can put this sauce on everything from meat, seafood and tofu and despite the base ingredients it doesn’t have to be spicy to have that peppery taste. If you enjoy the smell of fresh ground pepper or any variant (lemon pepper anyone) you will adore this.
Have a favorite Pepper Crab sauce? We’d love to hear about it! Tell us at @MIEWfoodsLLC