RECIPE: Soft Shell Crabs with Black Bean Sauce


4 large soft shell crabs
1 egg white, beaten
1 1/2 T. cornstarch, plus 3 T. more
1" peeled fresh ginger, finely chopped
4 cloves finely minced garlic
2 scallions: white parts finely chopped, green stalks sliced into thin rings
1/2 red bell pepper cut into small dice
1/2 yellow bell pepper cut into small dice
Oil for frying

1 T. sugar
2 T. soy sauce
2 T. white vinegar
2 t. cornstarch
2 T. dry sherry
2 t. Chinese fermented black beans

Clean the crabs (the fish store guys will do this), rinse if needed and pat dry.  Heat 3-4" of cooking oil in a deep pot to @350º. 

Prepare the sauce: In a bowl, combine the sugar, soy, vinegar, 2 t. cornstarch. sherry and black beans.  In a heavy pan, heat 1 T. cook the ginger, garlic, scallions and pepper briefly, just for a minute.  Stir in the sauce ingredients. It will thicken very quickly.  Cook for 30 seconds, remove from heat.  Thin it with water as needed to keep it a thick but still liquid consistency.  Set aside and keep warm.

Whisk 1 1/2 T. cornstarch into the eggs whites and coat crabs all over very well. Place crabs on a plate or a sheet of waxed paper and dust with the remaining 3 T. of cornstarch, creating as even a white coat as possible.

Fry crabs until crisp, about 2 minutes. Remove, let oil get hot again, then re-fry them until quite crisp, another 1-2 minutes.  They don't take too long.

Remove crabs, drain on paper towels, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and spoon the warm sauce over each.

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Written by on April 29, 2010 under ALL RECIPES.

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