Dominique Ansel Makes a Crab Dessert You Crack Open with a Mallet
The chocolate and mango-flavored confection was created in collaboration with Candlenut's Malcolm Lee.
Seafood rarely, if ever, makes an appearance in the dessert course. But with some clever craftsmanship, reigning world’s best pastry chef Dominique Ansel has figured out a way to make cracking into a freshly cooked crab a sweet confection in a collaboration with Singapore-based Malcolm Lee of Candlenut (Block 17A Dempsey Road, Singapore 249676). Ansel's bakery outpost in the Shibuya district of Tokyo is selling a Singaporean “Crab” Dessert, which even comes with a tiny mallet to help you but it open and enjoy it.
Featuring a red powder-dusted shell made from chocolate, the little crab looks strikingly similar to a real live crustacean and is very likely a nod to Singapore's popular chili crab dish. However, once you get past its red exterior, you’ll be treated to something a little more decadent than crab meat (depending on how you feel about crab meat). Inside the meaty claws, you’ll find a rich, yellow-orange mango mousse. Crack open the body and you’ll find white coconut-flavored panna cotta and green jewels of pandan-flavored jelly. Below the crab sits bits of mango and tapioca meant to appear like crab eggs.
The complex little critter is the result of a collaboration between Ansel and Lee for a Singapore Tourism Board exhibition titled Singapore: Inside Out, which recently traveled to Tokyo to feature the country’s many offerings. While Ansel is known for his inventive creations, especially at the shops in Japan, Malcolm Lee is accomplished in his own right, with Candlenut being awarded the first ever Michelin star to a restaurant specializing in Peranakan cooking—a blend of Chinese, Malay and Indonesian cuisines—last year.
Ansel and Lee's Singaporean “Crab” Dessert costs 2,400 yen or about $22 and will only be available until September 10 at Dominique Ansel Bakery’s Omotesando location. While there's no mention of the crab crawling its way to other Ansel outlets, with treats like this past summer's watermelon slice ice cream sandwich making their way stateside, we can only hope.