Wok Fried Lobster with Salted Egg and Crab Paste (Kang Phad Khai Khem Man Poo)

May 11, 2016

If you love unique and interesting flavors and rolling up your sleeves in the kitchen, then you'll love this authentic Thai stir-fry recipe from Glen Roberts, renowned chef and former culinary director for the Intercontinental Hua Hin Resort in Thailand. This elegant dish features fried lobster in a stir fry of red bell pepper, onion, salted egg, and a vibrant and flavorful blend of sweet, sour, and spicy sauces. If you can't find lobster in your area, we think this dish would also be wonderful with crab or a firm white fish such as halibut. 

Wok Fried Lobster with Salted Egg and Crab Paste (Kang Phad Khai Khem Man Poo)
From Glen Roberts, renowned chef and culinary director for the InterContinental Hua Hin Resort in Thailand


2 whole lobsters
1 teaspoon flour
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 1/2  tablespoons red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 ounce (2 cloves) onion, thinly sliced
4 tablespoons chicken stock
1 salted egg (see recipe and instructions below or look for them in Asian markets), finely chopped
4 teaspoons crab paste
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon chili paste
1 teaspoon red chili
1 spring onion or 2 green onions, thinly sliced at an angle


Step 1. In a large pot or fryer, heat 2 cups vegetable oil over medium-high until shimmering on the surface (about 365 degrees). Coat lobsters with flour and tap to remove excess. Add lobsters to oil and deep fry until cooked, turning if necessary so that each side gets cooked. You may have to do one lobster at a time depending on the size of your pot. Cook until the lobsters are pink and the coating is nicely browned. Remove from oil and set on clean paper towels.

Step 2. Heat up 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a wok and stir-fry garlic until fragrant, taking care to not overly brown the garlic.

Step 3. Add red pepper and onion, then stir-fry a little bit. Add chicken stock, all seasoning and remaining ingredients except spring onion (or green onion) stir until well combined.

Step 4. Add lobster, spring onion and combine with sauce for a few more seconds.

Step 5. Garnish with spring or green onion and serve with steamed rice.

Salted Eggs:
3 eggs  
1 cup water
¼ cup sea salt
½ of a star anise
½ teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns
1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine  

Step 1: Add water, salt, star anise, and Sichuan peppercorns to a saucepan and bring to a boil.

Step 2: Once the salt is completely dissolved, remove from heat and let cool completely. When the salted mixture has cooled, add the Shaoxing wine and stir well.

Step 3: Meanwhile, thoroughly clean the eggs and wipe them dry with a clean cloth.

Step 4: Carefully arrange the eggs in a container just big enough for the 3 eggs. Pour salted water into the container and cover the eggs. If the eggs float, gently place a small object, such as a saucer,  on top to get the eggs submerged completely in the brine.
Tightly cover the container and place at room temperature for 30 to 40 days (Tip: label the start and finish dates on the container and set a reminder on your calendar).
Step 5: After the 40-day brining, use immediately or keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 weeks.