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Dishes to claw for this weekend

CRAB lovers have much to rejoice over with these simple but delicious recipes using the King Crab and Irish Crab. ANUSHA K writes.

WITH sticky fingers, many used napkins and lots of utensils, enjoying a scrumptious meal of crabs is something I have always looked forward to. Red King Crabs are the best as any crab enthusiasts would agree.

Claimed to be the most prized species of crabs in the world, Toh Lee Chinese Restaurant at Hotel Nikko Kuala Lumpur is currently having its King Crab promotion until April 30. Besides the King Crab, another speciality is the Irish Crab, which is also available throughout the promotion period.

There are various preparation styles available, from Steamed Crabs with Black Beans to Stir-Fried with Supreme Chillies, Butter and Egg Floss and also Baked Crabs with Butter and Cheese. For an extra 'oomph', order the Fried Noodles with Crab Roe or Fried Rice with Crab Roe.

Toh Lee Chinese Restaurant offers a variety of Beijing and Sichuan cuisine with a touch of fusion. According to Chinese Chef, Chan Chong Yan, the large size of the King Crab and its sweet succulent meat is a favourite with patrons. Apparently, the King Crab can actually be mildly sweet, especially when it's eaten fresh.

Usually served in its shell, the King Crab (which originates from Australia), is best served with Egg White Sauce to achieve its full flavour. Great for the health conscious, the Steamed King Crab with Egg White Sauce is a blend of proteins with a very mild flavour. Its snow-white meat with leopard prints of dark red on its shell will immediately attract your attraction, leaving you pretty filled for quite a while.

Steamed King Crab with Egg White Sauce

Here's how to do the speciality Steamed King Crab with Egg White Sauce:

You will need:

* 3 Egg Whites

* 100ml water

* 1/2 tsp Salt

* 1/2 tsp Chicken stock

* 10gm Spring Onion

First, clean the King Crab thoroughly. Cut the crab into eight pieces and place it on a serving dish. Steam it for approximately eight minutes. Drain the water and mix with the other ingredients and steam again for three minutes. Add spring onion (sliced thinly). Serve hot!

Tip: If you find it hard to get King Crabs, you can opt for any local crab at the market. This seasonal King Crab is easily available in April. However, once you serve this dish, eat it immediately as the sauce tends to cake up easily, so consume it while it's piping hot! If you'd rather not steam the crab, you can saute it in a wok without adding the water.

This dish is a must-have if you're at the restaurant during the King Crab promotion. The Irish Crab, which originates from Ireland is another speciality dish when cooked with Butter and Garlic. Smaller in size compared to the King Crab, I personally felt this was fleshier than the King Crab. Mildly sweet, it was juicy nevertheless.

Irish Crab with Butter and Garlic

With a strong taste of butter and garlic, it's aromatic smell hits you right away. Here's what you need to make the Irish Crab with Butter and Garlic:

Gather up:

* 10gm Garlic

* 1/2 tsp Chicken Stock

* 1/2 tbs Maggi Seasoning

* 250ml water

* 10gm ginger

Clean the Irish Crab thoroughly. Cut into eight pieces. Heat the oil and add in the crab. Saute for two minutes and then remove oil. Add in superior stock (chicken stock, water and ginger) and bake it for five minutes. Serve immedietly.

Tip: Maggi Seasoning, which is used in this dish, is similar to soya sauce. However, this is more fragrant and is easily available in the supermarket.

The Irish Crab achieves its full fragrance once cooked in garlic and butter. You can substitute Irish crabs with local crabs also. But remember to cook all crabs while fresh as, if you keep them long in the freezer, they become very mushy and not very pleasant to eat.

The main difference between the King Crab and the Irish Crab is the taste and size. The King Crab is sweeter and larger in size, while the Irish Crab is mildly sweet, juicier and smal

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