Eat Australia // Chilli mud crab with green mango, coconut and herb salad

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2 whole live mud crabs

1 young coconut

Drizzle of vegetable oil

1 long red red chili, thinly sliced

½  red onion, thinly sliced

3 cm piece of ginger, peeled and cut into julienne

½  bunch coriander roots

30 g palm sugar, shaved

4 roma tomatoes, chopped

10 kaffir lime leaves

1 tbsp tamarind paste

60 ml (¼ cup) sweet soy sauce

1 tbsp fish sauce

1 lime, juiced

1 tbsp chopped garlic shoots



1 green mango, peeled and cut into julienne

½ red onion, thinly sliced

1 Lebanese cucumber, sliced

6 sugar snap peas

1 Nashi pear, thinly sliced

6 lychees, peeled, seeded and halved

½ bunch Thai basil, leaves picked

½  bunch Vietnamese mint, leaves picked

½ bunch coriander, sprigs picked



1 tbsp fish sauce

1 lime, juiced

5 g palm sugar


Pull the top shells off the crabs, then remove and discard the gills. Using a cleaver or large sharp knife, cut the crab into large pieces.

Using a cleaver, hold the coconut over a bowl, then crack open and reserve the coconut water. Run a metal spoon between the shell and the flesh of half the coconut. Reserve the remaining coconut half for another use.

Heat a drizzle of oil in a wok over high heat. Add the chilli, onion, ginger, coriander root, tomatoes, palm sugar lime leaves, tamarind and sweet soy sauce. Stir to combine well, then simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the fish sauce and lime juice. Add the crab, toss to coat well, then simmer for another 7 minutes or until just cooked through. Lastly, stir through 60 ml (¼ cup) reserved coconut water and the garlic shoots, then remove from the heat.

Place all the salad ingredients in a large bowl. Coarsely chop the reserved coconut flesh and add to the bowl. Whisk the salad dressing ingredients in a bowl, pour over the salad and gently toss through. Serve with the chilli mud crab.


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