Tropical Delights – Land crab claws in a white wine and cream sauce.



Land crab claws in a white wine and cream sauce.

L’Houstalet’s owner and chef Clement Martinez, shares with us one of the delicious recipes that gives L’Houstalet its reputation for authentic French cuisine!


A bundle of land crabs from the local market.

Two big onions.

Two cups of good white wine.

One cup of fresh cream.

Salt and pepper to taste.


Get a bundle of land crabs at the market. Cut off the claws and clean well under fresh water. Drop the claws into a pot of boiling water and when nicely red, take them out and let them cool down. Once cool, break the shell carefully without smashing the flesh and leaving the tip of the claws attached to the flesh. Put two cups of white wine in a pan and add the chopped onions, letting it boil at low heat until the onions are cooked. Add a cup of fresh cream, salt and pepper to taste and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the crab claws into the sauce and reheat the claws for a few more minutes. Thicken the sauce slightly if necessary.

To serve:

Arrange the crab claws around a plate and spread the sauce on top.

Serve with a scoop of rice and green vegetables.

Serves two


L’Houstalet is Port Vila’s oldest restaurant and is something of a local institution. It opened more than 40 years ago, and Clement and his team have been delighting customers for four decades with L’Houstalet typical French cuisine. A regular dining spot for the locals which radiates old colonial charm, L’Houstalet is known for the quality and consistency of its food. A great dining experience and an absolute ‘must’ when visiting Port Vila. If French delicacies such as ‘Flying fox’ are not for you, the premium Filet Roquefort, Lobster Thermidor, Prawns Flambé or delicious pizzas will not disappoint! Open for dinner 7 days, call 22303.