Halia’s Chilli Crab Spaghettini
What’s there not to like about chili crab? There are folks who will pop pills to counter allergies before diving into a platter of the rich gravy, soaking their bread or buns in it, or splashing it onto noodles or rice. A hot favourite among everyone, Halia has made life easier for the diner. No need to mess with crab shells and the like, the choice bits are worked into a lip-smacking pasta dish. While there are a number of restaurants offering chili crab pasta, Halia’s is still one of the tastiest around. Located at the Botanic Gardens, a UNESCO Heritage site, it’s also a halal restaurant. For those who want to wow your dinner partners, whip it up at home in under 15 minutes using Halia’s house-made chilli crab sauce!
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2 persons
A: Chilli Crab Sauce
1 teaspoon olive oil
1½ teaspoons chopped shallot
1½ teaspoons chopped garlic
2 teaspoons chilli flakes
2 tablespoons cooked crabmeat
240ml Halia chilli crab sauce*
1 tablespoon spring onions, chopped
1 egg, lightly beaten
¼ teaspoon salt
B: To Cook Pasta
200g spaghettini or angel hair pasta
2 litres water
1½ teaspoons salt
1 stalk spring onions, cut into 5cm strips
1 stalk coriander, cut into 5cm strips
1 red chilli, seeded, cut into thin strips
2 crab claws, partially shelled, optional
1. Heat up a saucepan over medium heat. Pour in oil. Sauté shallot, garlic and chilli flakes until aromatic, about 5 minutes.
2. Add crabmeat – it either be store-bought or freshly extracted from a crab that has been steamed until cooked.
Pour in the entire jar of chilli crab sauce. Mix well to get a uniform sauce to coat pasta.
3. Cook until sauce bubbles. Toss in spring onions. Season with salt to taste.
4. Pour beaten egg slowly into the sauce while stirring gently to ensure it does not curdle. As the egg cooks, it will create swirls in the sauce.
5. To cook pasta: Bring water to a rolling boil over high heat, then add in salt. Add in pasta; cook until al dente or as per packet instructions.
6. Divide pasta between 2 serving plates. Using a slotted spoon, divide sauce equally between the 2 plates. If desired, enhance pasta with 1 piece of crab claw per serving.
7. Garnish with spring onions and coriander. Serve immediately.
8. Apart from serving the sauce with pasta, turn it into a dip! Enjoy it with prawn crackers, Chinese buns (mantou) or toast.
*TIP: A great time saver is Halia’s house brand chilli crab sauce. Apart from serving it as a topping for pasta, it is equally good for cooking other seafood like prawns, squid and shellfish like mussels and clams. Simply pour sauce over cooked seafood that has been sautéed in oil and toss until well combined. Cook another 5 minutes until the seafood begins to absorb the sauce.
Halia at Singapore Botanic Gardens: Established since 2001, Halia is located within UNESCO world heritage site of the Singapore Botanic Gardens. Popular for tourists and locals alike, it is one of the first few Singapore restaurants to showcase modern European cuisine with Asian influences. Halia is a Malay word for ginger, hence the restaurant’s name is synonymous with its location within the Ginger Garden. In 2017, the restaurant was halal-certified.
Website: : http://thehalia.com/
Photos: The Halia restaurant at Singapore Botanic Gardens