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  • Nicola

Cantonese-style Creamy Butter Sauce Crab with Noodles

Updated: Apr 15, 2020

This is yet another popular seafood dish served in Chinese restaurants. This one is a creamy butter sauce coating crab and served with noodles. The crab is first coated with tapioca starch or cornstarch and then deep-fried to seal in the juices as well as provide a coating for the delicious butter sauce to adhere to. The butter sauce is made with onions, garlic, butter, and evaporated milk.

The noodles are completely optional, I like mine with thin egg noodles, but feel free to substitute with yee mien. It can also be served without the noodles, the sauce is super yummy when mixed with rice, or you can try to eat it with plain mantou.


Cantonese-style Creamy Butter Sauce Crab with Noodles

Makes 1 crab

Ingredients: 1 1/2 lb Dungeness Crab, broken into pieces 2 -3 Tablespoon Tapioca Starch or Cornstarch 1 Cup of Frying Oil 1/2 stick of Unsalted Butter (1/4 Cup/60g) 1/2 Teaspoon Salt 2 Slices Ginger 1 Medium Onion, finely chopped 2 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped 1/4 Teaspoon White Pepper 1 Teaspoon Shao Xing wine 1/2 Can of Evaporated Milk 1/4 Cup Chicken Broth A bundle of egg thin noodles/wonton noodles/yee mien Cilantro to garnish


  1. Heating oil in a large wok. You can check if the oil is hot enough by adding a small piece of scallion or ginger to see if it sizzles.

  2. While the oil is heating, season the crab with salt then toss the crab with tapioca starch until pieces are well-coated.

  3. Carefully add crab pieces to hot oil one piece at a time, do not overcrowd the wok or it can cause steaming and we want the crab to deep-fry if needed fry in batches.

  4. Fry until the coating is crisp and pale, about 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer back to a bowl.

  5. Pour away the oil and clean the wok. Make sure to strain and save the oil for another seafood frying.

  6. On medium-high heat, add the unsalted butter. As the butter is melting add the ginger.

  7. Next add the onion and garlic, saute for two minutes until softened.

  8. Next add the crab back. Stir fry for a minute.

  9. Drizzle the shao xing wine around the perimeter of the wok.

  10. Cover with the lid for 30 seconds to allow the wine to infuse into the crab.

  11. Add the evaporated milk, white pepper, and chicken broth. Stir and coat the crab with the mixture. Bring to a boil for a minute then cover with the lid and cook on medium-low heat for 3 minutes. Stir occasionally.

  12. Optional - if you like your sauce thicker, feel free to add a slurry of tapioca starch mixture (1 tablespoon tapioca starch or cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of cold water).

  13. In a separate pot, cook the thin egg noodles or yee mien in water.

  14. When the crab is done, pour overtop of the noodles.

  15. Garnish with cilantro.



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