Five places to eat hairy crab

Hairy crab season is back again and restaurants are showcasing the crustacean's sweet flesh and creamy roe.

Do not worry about making a mess, as the steamed crab is generally prepared so that diners do not have to work too hard to get at the sweet crabmeat.

The shell, lungs and pincers are removed. Using a special pair of scissors, the legs are cut in half, with the narrower part of the leg used to push out the flesh from the bigger piece.

From Li Bai's braised bird's nest with hairy crab meat and crab roe to Min Jiang's baked hairy crab with ginger rice wine wrapped in lotus leaf, the variety of dishes available this year makes a sumptuous feast for all budgets.

Find out where you can satisfy your hairy crab craving this year:


MIN JIANG

What: The prized hairy crab returns to Min Jiang restaurant in a variety of dishes such as a duo of steamed xiao long bao with chilli crabmeat and baked Japanese fresh scallop with mentaiko mayonnaise paired with chilled angel hair noodles with truffle oil and hairy crab meat ($28 a person); baked hairy crab with ginger rice wine wrapped in lotus leaf ($68 a crab); and steamed hairy crab with glutinous rice served in bamboo basket ($68 each).

Two set menus ($108 or $128 a person, minimum two diners) are also available.

Where: Goodwood Park Hotel, 22 Scotts Road
When: Until Oct 23
Info: Call 6730-1704 or e-mail min_jiang@goodwoodparkhotel.com

PUTIEN

What: Steamed hairy crabs ($35 or $45) from Taihu Lake, known for its good quality crustaceans. The hairy crab is also used in a deep-fried crab meat cake ($19.80), with its roe as well as shrimp paste and cabbage.

Where: All Putien outlets including 127 Kitchener Road, Jurong Point, and Tampines Mall.
When: Until Nov 30
Info: www.putien.com

LI BAI CANTONESE RESTAURANT

What: New creations on the hairy crab menu include braised bird's nest with hairy crab meat and crab roe ($88 a person); and braised king prawn and sweet potato topped with hairy crab meat and crab roe ($36 a person). To savour the natural sweetness of the crab, opt for the steamed hairy crab ($60 a crab).

Where: Sheraton Towers Singapore Hotel, 39 Scotts Road
When: Until Nov 30
Info: Call 6839-5623 or e-mail libai@sheratonsingapore.com

ROYAL PAVILION

What: Royal Pavilion's debut hairy crab menu does not only showcase the classic steamed crab, but also a modern take on the seasonal ingredient. These include baked hairy crab with wild mushroom and sake in Japanese style ($68++ a crab); flambe drunken hairy crab served with herbal soup ($68++ a crab); and flambe hairy crab with sea salt served in claypot ($68++ a crab).

Where: Park Regis Singapore, Level 1, 23 Merchant Road
When: Until mid-November, while stocks last
Info: Call 6818-8851 or e-mail reservation@rpguandi.com

HAI TIEN LO

What: Indulge in these Chinese mitten crabs at Cantonese restaurant Hai Tien Lo. A la carte dishes include steamed hairy crab meat and crab roe with Alaska crab claw and egg white ($42, serves three); braised beancurd with pine mushrooms, hairy crab meat and crab roe ($28, serves three); steamed minced pork dumpling with hairy crab meat and roe ($6.20 for three pieces).

For a more decadent meal, opt for executive chef Lai Tong Ping's six-course menu ($168 a person, minimum two diners) which showcases different preparations of the crab. Highlights include lobster with hairy crab meat and crab roe in thick broth; and pan-fried sliced garoupa fish with crab meat, crab roe and minced pork.

Where: Pan Pacific Singapore, 7 Raffles Boulevard
When: Until Nov 16
Info: Call 6826-8240 or e-mail celebrate.sin@panpacific.com


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