The Best and Authentic Durban Crab Curry

The Best and Authentic Durban Crab Curry

Calling all seafood lovers to the forefront for this one! This right here is an authentic, spicy, Durban crab curry. Freshly ground spices, garlic, delicious crab and a few other simple ingredients is all that is needed to bring this dish together. A dish to be enjoyed around the table with your family and friends whilst the juices from the spicy crab runs from your hands down your arm…. if this happens, then you know you are eating it like a proper Indian.

This dish is flavour packed and super amazzzzing! Crab curry needs to be enjoyed spicy and hot. You can adjust the amount of chilli powder according to your tastebuds, but like I said, a Durban Crab curry is pungent and spicy. Click on the video link on the recipe card, to watch how it is done.

Crab Curry

It all starts with cleaning the crab and getting it ready for the curry. I find that taking a few minutes to prep by having all my ingredients ready before hand makes the whole process so much easier and enjoyable. Roast and grind the spices. The spices that I use for a crab curry are, jeera (cumin seeds), sarso (mustard seeds), methi seeds (fenugreek), dhania seeds (coriander), black peppercorns, chilli powder, kasuri methi (dried fenugreek and chillies. The aroma and distinct flavour of the above spices is what renders the delicious taste in this curry. The gravy/sauce of the curry is simple and tangy, made with crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, water and tamarind. As the spices and crab simmer in the tomato, tamarind gravy it absorbs all the amazing flavour, making this one utterly delicious curry. So if you are ready to put on an old t-shirt and roll up those sleeves, and eat the most damn delicious crab curry then here is the recipe for you. Happy cooking!

If you enjoy your curries and on the search for other Indian recipes then, why not not try out my Spinach and Dhal Makhani or this easy Chicken Biryani recipe.

If it is seafood dishes you are after, then i have plenty of those recipes too, click on one the recipe links below


Durban Crab Curry

Spicy Durban Crab Curry

Apriena Jugoo Pummer
An authentic Durban Crab curry made with freshly ground spices, tomatoes and tamarind. Cooked to perfection to please the whole family
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course any, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine asian, Curry, Durban, Indian, Indian South African, South African
Servings 5


  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 4 dried red chillies
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 red onions sliced
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves separated
  • 5 cloves garlic crushed
  • coarse salt
  • 1.5-2 kg crab cleaned
  • 2 tbsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp masala
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 800 ml crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 tbsp tamarind - mixed with 1/2 -3/4 cup of water
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • freshly chopped coriander leaves
  • 1-2 tsp sugar


  • Roast the cumin seeds, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, dhania seeds, black peppercorns and dried chillies in a pan on low heat for about 3 minutes, tossing frequently as to make sure not to burn the spices
  • Once cooled, grind the spices into a powder and keep aside
  • Heat a large pot on medium to high heat and add the oil, onions and 1 sprig of curry leaves
  • Allow the onions to get translucent before adding the crushed garlic - mix well
  • Now add 2 heaped tablespoons of the freshly ground spice mix that was just ground and also add corse salt, according to taste
  • In goes the cleaned crab, mix well, place the lid onto the pot and simmer for 5 minutes
  • Add the chilli powder, masala and turmeric powder and another tablespoon of the freshly ground spice - give it a good toss
  • Add the crushed tomatoes and the tomato paste, mixed with a dash of water , mix well
  • Add hot water and the tamarind and the rest of the curry leaves and simmer for about 10 -15 minutes until thickened, add sugar to balance the acidity
  • Garnish with kasuri methi and freshly chopped coriander leaves


Keyword Crab, Curry, seafood, Spicy

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