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Ceja Vineyards

Amelia Ceja
January 31, 2011 | Culinary Creations | Amelia Ceja

Learn How to Make Steamed Dungeness Crab in a Spicy Indonesian Sauce with Amelia Ceja

With origins from South East Asia, this tasty recipe pairs beautifully with our just released Ceja Vineyards Brut Sparkling Wine. The wine's crisp balanced acidity cuts through the spice component of the sauce accentuating the sweetness of the crab. ¡Salud!


Dungeness Crab in a Spicy Indonesian Style Sauce
From Amelia Morán Ceja's Kitchen
Serves 4

Our family favors this delicious main course for our Thanksgiving dinner when fresh Dungeness crabs are available. Some flavors seem made for each other, and tamarind salsa is one of those perfect culinary marriages. Here it is served over crab; perhaps the world's sweetest of all seafoods.


• 4 crabs separated, cleaned, and cracked
• 2 tamarind pods*
• 1 coarsely chopped wine onion
• 2 tablespoons minced Serrano peppers*
• 2 tablespoons minced garlic cloves
• 2 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons corn starch
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• Salt
• Crab reduction broth (please see instructions below)
*Tamarind pods and Serrano peppers are found at most grocery stores.


For the crab reduction sauce:
• In a saucepan, place the smallest crab legs (8 to 12) with 8 whole cloves of garlic, ½ an anion, 2 stalks of celery cut in half, 5 cups of water and 2 bay leafs. Gently simmer until the liquid is reduced to 2 cups.

For the Tamarind Salsa:
• Peel the tamarind's shell and soak in water. Discard seeds, and just keep the pulp. 
• Sauté chopped onion, minced Serrano peppers, minced garlic and minced ginger in two tablespoons olive oil 5 to 6 minutes. Add the crab sauce and soy sauce and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
• In a blender or food processor, combine the sautéed ingredients with the crab sauce and tamarind pulp -- then process until smooth.
• Return the processed Indonesian sauce back to the pan and bring gently to a boil. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch with water and slowly add to sauce while stirring it. Simmer for 5 minutes until slightly thickened.

Steam the cracked crab pieces for five minutes then place in a large bowl. Next, add the tamarind sauce and coat well. Serve immediately. Make sure you have a bib and lots of napkins.


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