Nadan njandu curry is an authentic preparation of crab. In this recipe crab meat is cooked in coconut milk with a blend of spices and topped off with a tadka in fresh coconut oil. The crab meat is delicate, soft, juicy and sweet. The gravy is spicy but the coconut milk makes it smooth and mild. Traditional crab curry is a nutritious recipe with hot and spicy flavor. It is a dish that one needs to sit and eat at leisure. Because eating crabs needs a lot of patience to break the shell and suck out the flesh, but I should admit that it is definitely worth it. The detailed recipe with step by step cooking pictures follows.
I got introduced to this crab preparation by my mother in law. I learnt this recipe from her. I know now a days I am posting more non-veg recipes, especially seafood right? But okey anyway it is a wonderful recipe and I am sure that all seafood lovers will love it. I have already posted crab roast, kerala crab curry with coconut etc. crab is one of a nutritious seafood variety. Kerala is blessed with the availability of fresh seafood all around the year. Nadan njandu curry, kappa puzhukku or rice is one of a special recipe combination in the toddy shops or restaurants across the central Kerala.
Tips- I have used fresh coconut milk for a delicious taste. But if you don’t have the time, you can ofcourse use readymade coconut milk powder. Green chilies and red chili powder is used for a spicy flavor. Split the crab from the center and detach the legs. Then wash the pieces in running tap water for a while. Take some water with turmeric powder and salt, dip crab pieces in the water for 10 minutes and wash well. Drain out the crab and set aside. This curry will be taste best, if cooked in a mannchatty/ clay pot.
How to Make Nadan Njandu Curry- Traditional Kerala Spicy Crab Curry with Coconut Milk
Heat 2tbsp coconut oil in a clay pot, add crushed ginger and saute until raw smell goes on.
Now add shallots, green chilies and salt. Stir well for 3-4 minutes on low flame or until shallots turns soft and translucent.
Then add cubed tomatoes and combine well.
Add turmeric powder, red chilly powder, coriander powder and garam masala powder. Mix well on low flame, so that the raw smell diminishes.
Add in the crabs and combine well.
Add thin coconut milk and put the flame on high and allow it to boil well. Once boil keep the flame on low and cook for 10 mints.
Add salt and tamarind juice, combine well. Boil for 10 more minutes.
Add thick coconut milk and combine well. Once starts to boil off the flame and set aside.
Heat another pan with 2 tbsp coconut oil, add mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds allow it to splutter. Add sliced shallots, curry leaves and torn dry red chilies and fry until shallots turns brown.
Pour this tempering over the curry and cover it with a lid. Serve along with rice after 15 mints resting.
Enjoy!! Happy cooking and stay healthy.