Nothing on the dining table signifies fall better than rare, highly sought after and fresh palm-sized hairy crabs from Yang Cheng Lake in the Jiangsu province of China. Just the thought of zesty white crab meat with creamy golden roe is enough to make me salivate!
Baked with sea salt to enhance the natural flavours of the crab – after all, crabs are supposed to come from the sea – Sea Salt Baked Hairy Crab in Golden Pillow ($68+) impressed us with its surprisingly sweet, delicate crab meat and rich, creamy crab roe. Traditionally served with Chinese style buns, Chef Lee Hin Min decided to make things more enjoyable by serving the Sea Salt Baked Hairy Crab in a fancy crab-shaped handcrafted bread crust.
Served fancily also, in a cocktail glass, is Steamed Scallop with Hairy Crabmeat, Egg-White and Spinach Broth ($38+). The dish showcases three distinct layers of ingredients. Right at the bottom is a layer of extremely light and silky egg white, covered with a layer of sensational spinach liquid. Overlaying the bases is a sheet of fragrant, moist and flaky crab meat, topped with a teaspoonful of caviar and cilantro leaf. What you don’t see is the large chunky steamed scallop in the middle of the glass. All the flavours complemented each other so well, we quickly reckoned this dish as our most favourite.
Try also the decadent Steamed ‘Xiao Long Bao’ with Hairy Crab Golden Roe ($18+/3 pcs). The amount of broth inside was just enough to create a tantalising burst of sweet and savoury flavours with hints of shaoxing wine. Textures were amazing too, given the combination of fine, translucent skin with warm minced meat, flaky crab meat and rich, creamy crab roe.
For stronger tastes and heavier body, try the Wok Fried ‘Shanghai’ Nian Gao with Hairy Crab in XO Sauce. Despite the distinct wok hay, rich broth that evenly coats the chewy nian gao, and heavily infused hairy crab, the dish manages to deliver clean, smooth and ’round’ flavours. Fill the remaining space in your tummy with Wok Tossed Fragrant Rice with Hand Peeled Crabmeat. The dish is as flavourful as it is colourful, with fresh peeled crab meat in fluffy, loose and fragrant rice – very satisfying.
Complete your meal with traditional sweet and spicy Boiled Hot Ginger Tea with Glutinous Rice Dumpling Accompanied with Maoshan Wang Durian Mochi. If you don’t already know, ginger aids your digestion – especially after such a heavy meal – and helps balance out the cooling effect of hairy crab meat. There is also no better way to end your meal than with a small indulgence of Maoshan Wang Durian Mochi. The skin is perfectly soft and chewy with pulpy durian inside – you must try this.
Peony Jade @ Keppel Bay
Bukit Chermin Road, Keppel Club (Level M)
Tel: 6276 9138
Operating Hours: Lunch 11am – 2.30pm (Last order 2pm)
Dinner 6pm – 11pm (Last order 10.30pm)