How to cook Ginataang Alimasag or Crabs in Coconut Milk
Published: 30-May-2018 (23:58); Viewed: 1994; Difficulty: 4 out of 10
This is a traditional Pinoy recipe of crabs cooked in coconut cream, called Ginataang Alimasag. The main idea of this dish is to cook crabs in coconut milk together with herbs and vegetables. The simplest way to explain, how to cook Ginataang Alimasag or Crabs in Coconut Milk is to show, how to cook crabs with vegetables in spicy coconut milk. Of course, to make this dish very original, you should use local mud crabs, from Philippines, but generally any crabs will do.
also, in out recipe How to cook Ginataang Alimasag, you can see a lot of vegetables added to the dish. You can choose any of your available vegetable combinations, but you only need to make sure, that all of them will be ready at the same time.
Cooking crabs in coconut milk is really easy but very popular in Philippines, and you can make this dish by yourself without any problems.
Read our step by step guide, watch our video (yes, this is our first video!), and you will know how to cook crabs in coconut milk, Pinoy style!
Ingredients for 2 portions:
Crabs – 1 kg
Cooking oil – 2 tbsp
Coconut milk – 600ml
Garlic – 2 bulbs
Onion – 2 bulbs
Ginger – 3 inch piece
Chilli – 3 birds eye (adjust to your preference)
Shrimp paste – 1 tbsp
Fish sauce – 2 tbsp
Black pepper – 1 tsp
Lemon Grass – 4 stalks
Bunch of fresh vegetables: Green beans, Spinach, Pak Choi, baby sweetcorn
Prepare all vegetables: Chop onion. Slice garlic. Cur ginger into a large pieces. If you wish, you can grate ginger as well, but it is not really necessary. Crush a bit lemon grass. Chop chilli. Separate Pak Choi. Wash spinach. You can cut sweetcorn into a pieces, or leave as it is
Remove crabs tail and cut them into a halves. It is necessary to do for fast cooking and for quick taste exchange between crab meat and coconut milk sauce.
At this step you should prepare spicy components for your coconut milk. It is very simple. In a few spoons of cooking oil – soften the chopped onion. Add chopped garlic and cook for few minutes steering constantly. At this stage you need always stir it to avoid burning. Add sliced ginger and chopped chilli. Add shrimp paste and stir it in. Fry for few minutes.
Add coconut creamy milk and black pepper. Stir until it turns into uniform liquid.
Add the rest of spices, like fish sauce, salt to taste. Add lemon grass and beans. Bring to boil. From now you don’t need to stir it and it is better to cook under lid.
Place crabs into the boiling liquid. Don’t worry if some parts will not be completely covered. Add broccoli and sweetcorn. Bring to boil and simmer 5 minutes
Turns crabs, specially those, not fully covered by coconut milk and simmer for another 5 minutes. Please note, that this time is perfect for these small floating crabs. If you have large crabs – adjust time accordingly.
Add Pak Choi and cook another 2-3 minutes, until it will softened.
Add spinach and simmer 2-3 minutes more.
Stir it carefully, please remember that cooked crabs can be fragile. Serve.
If after reading of our step by step guide how to cook Crabs in Coconut Milk (Ginataang Alimasag), you still have a questions, then please watch our short video Crabs cooked in Coconut Milk - Ginataang Alimasag with all details and instructions:
tips and tricks
You can freese crabs for 1-2 hours to gently kill them
You can use any vegetables, but when adding them, estimate to do it in order, to make them soft and ready at the same time