Seafood Kare Kare is a succulent Filipino stew in peanut sauce with a variety of seafood and vegetables. I used crabs, squid, shrimp and mussels for this recipe but you can use whatever seafood you like or available to you. This version of Seafood Kare Kare is cooked with coconut milk which makes this dish savory and rich. If for some reason you don’t like coconut milk or allergic to it you can still make seafood kare kare by eliminating the coconut milk. I’ll have another post for that recipe. It is still very delicious without it.
Seafood Kare Kare is the seafood version of our popular Oxtail Kare Kare and served with shrimp paste (bagoong).
When vacationing in any Philippine resort especially right by the ocean Seafood Kare Kare is usually in the restaurants menu. If you’ve never had this – try it and you will love it. You will be asking for more. Forget about dieting on this day. This goes well with white rice and bagoong.
But if you are on a strict diet and need to be on low carbs this seafood kare kare recipe has a variety of vegetables. I used kabocha squash, eggplant, long string beans and banana blossom. Not many people cook Kare Kare with squash but you should try it – it complements Seafood Kare Kare so well especially if the squash is creamy – I think the term in Tagalog is “malabo”. Correct me if I am wrong. When cooking the squash don’t overcook it. Who wants a mushy vegetable unless if you are feeding it to a baby. The squash should be soft but firm. Every time I make any type of Kare Kare I use squash as one of my veggies.
Usually when I make our traditional Kare Kare I don’t blanche the vegetables but with Seafood Kare Kare I do. Also, it is best to have seafood broth instead of water. I always cook the crabs ahead of time. I boil the crabs in water and reserve 3 cups of the broth. Or when cooking the seafood, cook the mussels last and add about 2 cups of water and reserve that broth.
Also, I don’t add too much peanut butter and coconut milk to this dish. Both these ingredients are rich and I don’t like it too rich. I like it on the lighter side or in Tagalog – “nakakasuya” because it is so rich. But if you prefer a lot of sauce or you like your seafood swimming in coconut milk then you may add more than what I have in my recipe.
How to Cook Seafood Kare Kare
If you are anxious to make this dish today watch my video “How to Cook Seafood Kare Kare” and let me know how it turned out. If you have any suggestions feel free to leave me a comment. Thank you for watching.
For more simple and easy recipes go to the “Recipe” menu.
- 6 to 8 large shrimp cleaned
- 2 cooked crabs
- 6 to 8 pieces mussels cleaned and brushed
- 8 small squids cleaned
- 8 pieces of kabocha squash cut into 2 x 2
- 12 string beans tied in knots
- 1 small banana heart chopped
- 1 small eggplant chopped
- 1/2 to 1 cup of coconut milk (I used 1/3 of a 13.5 fl oz can)
- 3 tablespoons peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon annatto powder (achiote)
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 8 tablespoons cooking oil
- 3 cups crab broth (Note: I boiled the crabs and used this broth. You may substitute with water or seafood broth. When you cook the mussels add 2 cups of water. You can use the liquid from when you parboiled the veggies.)
Blanch all the vegetables except for the squash. Prepare a bowl with water and ice. Set aside.
Boil 5 cups of water and blanch the string beans, eggplant and banana heart. Cook each vegetable for about 4 minutes or when tender but still crisp. Transfer the vegetables in the water and ice mixture. Keep it in the bowl until vegetables are cold. Remove from the bowl and set aside.
Heat 4 tablespoons of cooking oil in a pan.
Saute onion for 3 minutes.
Add garlic and cook until golden.
Fry shrimps,squids and mussels. Saute crabs. Remove from pan and set aside.
Add the peanut butter. Mix well.
Pour coconut milk.
Add annatto powder and toasted rice (grinded) (substitute with cornstarch diluted in water or breadcrumbs) to thicken sauce.
Pour broth. I used crab broth.
Bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium-low.
When squash is almost done, add all the seafood and vegetables.
Simmer for 4 minutes.
Season with salt or fish sauce.
Serve hot with shrimp paste (bagoong).
1. I don’t add too much peanut butter or coconut milk as both ingredients are too rich. I like my sauce lighter (than nakakasuya in Tagalog). You may tweak these ingredients to your liking.
2. Cook the crabs as soon as you get it to avoid food poisoning. Also, boil the crabs with 2 cups of water. FYI, crabs also retain water. Reserve about 3 cups of broth.
3. If it is too much work for you to blanch the vegetables you may cook the veggies with the sauce just don’t overcooked it. Then put all the seafood last and simmer for about 2 minutes and turn off the heat.
4. You can eliminate the coconut milk if you don’t like it or allergic to it.
5. To thicken sauce I used toasted rice (grind). You may substitute with bread crumbs or 2 tablespoons cornstarch diluted in 2 tablespoons water.