I blame Marketman for this. After reading this
post I could not stop thinking about salted egg prawns. And crabs. And fried rice.
Fortunately I live two bus stops away from the enormous Fairprice Xtra, so it's easy to get (relatively) fresh seafood. You can even get live ones, but the logistics of bringing them home is something I refuse to deal with.
|Wherever there's an aquarium, that's where I'll be|
The frozen seafood section has its good days and bad, and at the time of shopping the crabs looked a bit suspicious so I got prawns instead. These were promptly deveined, with the whiskers trimmed, but the shell left intact. The easiest way to do this is with kitchen shears - just slide one blade between the head and the body and snip away towards the tail. A knife is just too risky because the shells are slippery. Anyway, after cleaning I dunked the shrimp into some flour mixed with salt and paprika - only because I ran out of cayenne pepper - and deep fried them.
I am actually perfectly happy to start eating at this point, but the curry leaves and salted egg would go to waste. Speaking of, I have never tried purchasing salted duck eggs before, and here they were quite different. Back in the Philippines salted eggs are a gleaming pink with food coloring; here they're a creepy black.
More accurately, they're covered in sand (?), which explains the individual plastic bags. I don't know what the sand is for, exactly, but it's annoying to have to wash it off. Ick.
The second surprise is: it's not yet cooked! I've only ever seen cooked salted eggs. So imagine my surprise when I cracked one open and the gloopy whites started oozing out. Thankfully the yolk is one solid orange mass so it's easy to pick out. It's recommended to steam the yolk prior to use, but I used them raw because I'm lazy like that.
After deep frying the shrimp, I sautéed some garlic and onions in a bit of olive oil, added tons of chili leaves (because the smallest packet in the store had a LOT of leaves), mixed in half a stick of butter, and then added the yolk. It makes this most interesting bubbly frothy thing.
And it smells divine. You can pour the sauce on top of the fried shrimp, but I did it the other way around because it looks more photogenic :p
This is just too cholesterol-laden to go wrong. Although for next time, I am toying with the idea of a salted egg batter instead of a sauce, and to use naked (peeled) shrimps. We'll see.
Since the prawns were successful it's time to try it with crabs. Marketman suggests deep-frying them in lard, but that's a bit too terrifying for me (my face tends to attract boiling hot oil). So I just boiled some flower crabs instead. I let them cool for a bit and then opened them up, split the body in two, and dunked them into the sauce.
This is what happens when you don't steam the yolk and you don't mix the sauce thoroughly - you get huge salted egg bits. But no complaints because it's just as yummy. Sigh.
After this I'm certainly up to my ears in cholesterol. Must go back to oven toaster veggies.