Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 10 minutes

Serves: 4 servings

Mouthwatering Crab Curry

Tarryn Debideen, winner of Pineware Mamma’s Recipe October 2019: “This recipe came from my late grandmother.  She loved making crab for us on the farm near the rivers, where they lived.  She would catch fresh crabs and make a curry for us”.


  1. 8 Fresh Crabs
  2. 1 1/2 Inches of lump of tamarind
  3. 1/2 Cup of hot water
  4. 2 Large onions (sliced)
  5. 2 Large tomatoes (sliced)
  6. 10 Dry red chilies (use less if you do not want a hot curry)
  7. 2 Tablespoons of garlic paste
  8. 1 Tablespoon of ginger paste
  9. 1 1/2 Cups of grated, fresh coconut
  10. 2 Tablespoons of coriander powder
  11. 2 Tablespoons of cumin powder
  12. 1/2 Teaspoons of turmeric powder
  13. 1/2 Teaspoons of red chili powder
  14. 2 Green chilies, slit
  15. 2 Tablespoons of vegetable, canola or sunflower cooking oil
  16. Hot water for gravy (approximately 3 cups)
  17. Salt to taste


  1. Remove the crab legs and set them aside.
  2. Remove the claws from the legs so that each leg is divided into two parts.
  3. Cut the crab bodies into halves or quarters with a cleaver.
  4. Soak the tamarind in 1/2 cup of hot water for 10 minutes.
  5. Mash the tamarind with your fingers to mix it well into the water.
  6. Strain it through a sieve to extract all the pulp.
  7. Set the pulp aside.
  8. Put the onion, tomato, coconut, ginger, garlic, dry red chilies, all of the spices and the tamarind pureé into your food processor and grind the mixture well to make a smooth paste (also called masala).
  9. Set a deep, heavy-bottomed pan over a medium flame, and when the pan is hot, add the cooking oil and heat the oil.
  10. Add the green chilies and the masala paste to the oil and sauté for five minutes. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
  11. Add 3 cups of hot water — more or less if you would like more or less gravy — and bring the gravy to a boil. Reduce the flame to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.
  12. Add salt to taste.
  13. Gently add the pieces of crab to the gravy and cook uncovered for 10 more minutes.
  14. Turn off the fire and serve immediately with plain boiled rice or jeera rice.