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Food Matters: A version of Eddie V's meal tailored for backyard grills

Staff Writer
Austin 360

Chris Bauer, who took over Eddie V's Prime Seafood at 301 E. Fifth St. back in 2009, serves a broiled swordfish topped with crab, avocado and red chile vinaigrette at his downtown restaurant, but the Culinary Institute of America-trained chef offered up a grilled version for home cooks who are looking to serve something a little more upscale than burgers off their backyard grills.

Sustainably harvested swordfish — harpoon- and handline-caught swordfish result in little to no bycatch — is becoming easier to find, just be sure to ask your seafood monger about how and where the fish were caught. (On the other hand, swordfish's notoriously high mercury concentration is unavoidable, so eat sparingly and avoid if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.)

Bauer says the thickness of the steak and the heat of the fire are two important variables that will determine how well the fish cooks. "Fish should not be any thicker than 3/4-inch and no less than 1/2-inch," Bauer says. "Build your charcoal fire and allow charcoal to burn until it has a white ash covering." Brush lightly with olive oil; too much will cause flare-ups. He suggests pairing the dish with a crisp, white wine.

Charcoal-Grilled Swordfish Steaks with Avocado, Fresh Crab, Red Chile and Cilantro

1 8 oz. swordfish steak, 3/4 thick, no skin, no bloodline

Kosher salt, as needed

Fresh cracked pepper, as needed

6 Tbsp. olive oil, divided

1 avocado, peeled and diced

1 Tbsp. red onion, very finely diced

2 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped

1 Tbsp. red pepper, very finely diced

1 tsp. Serrano pepper, very finely diced

4 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar

1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

1 Tbsp. sambal chili sauce

4 oz. fresh crab meat, no shells

Season swordfish with salt and pepper, brush lightly with 2 Tbsp. olive oil. Over a very hot charcoal fire, grill swordfish for 4 minutes on each side over to desired doneness. (Medium-medium rare is preferable.)

Combine avocado, onion, cilantro, peppers, vinegar, remaining olive oil, lime juice and sambal. Season with salt to taste. Place swordfish in center of hot plate.

Place avocado mixture on top of swordfish. Place fresh crab on top of avocado mixture. Serve immediately. Serves one generously, could be split into two.

— Chris Bauer, Eddie V's Prime Seafood

Holly's Pie Hole has pies, other goodies for delivery

Holly Barentine and friends Joanne Jones and Hillary Poulsen have teamed up to launch Holly's Pie Hole, a dessert delivery company that specializes in pies, cupcakes, truffles, whoopie pies and cookies. Barentine says customers should plan to order 72 hours ahead of when they want the items delivered and that there is a $15 minimum order for delivery. They do offer some vegan and gluten-free desserts, You can see the current menu, which includes a variety of fruit pies that cost $15 each and tiny pies that run about $5 each, and request custom flavors at hollys?piehole.com.

Austin's first Dishcrawl tour set for next week

Pub crawls are so popular now that happy-go-lucky drinkers have started to pick bars based on their proximity to public transportation so they can hit as many as they can in one night, without driving, of course.

A handful of entrepreneurs in the San Francisco Bay Area have applied the idea to food to create Dishcrawl, a progressive dinner tour that takes place in more than a dozen cities. Austin's first dishcrawl, led by Austinite Linda Nguyen, will take place at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, starting at an as-yet-undisclosed restaurant on South Congress Avenue. Nguyen says that part of the goal, in addition to sampling food from a number of places in one night, is to connect foodies with the chefs behind the restaurants and with fellow food lovers.

Tickets cost $40, which includes food but not drinks at each of the restaurants on the tour. You can follow along on Twitter @dishcrawlATX or find details and tickets at dishcrawl.com/austinfirst.

New brewpub on tap from Uncle Billy's alums

The local craft beer community is all abuzz about the latest brewery announcement, that Amos Lowe, Brian Peters, Chris Fowler and Tim Stevens from Uncle Billy's are leaving to open a new brewpub, the Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co.

Lowe says the new operation will be in South Austin and will focus on "serving handcrafted beer and pizza. The menu will vary depending on what is in season and what is available fresh from local farms."

With an estimated production start date in January, the team will focus on "brewing a wide variety of styles exercising our creativity while always paying the proper respect to traditional beer styles and brewing practices," Lowe said.

With that in mind, they will always have a pilsner, a pale ale and a hoppy IPA on tap.

– Emma Janzen