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Best Thing I Ate This Week: Crab and butternut squash at Vixen’s Wedding

Matthew Odam
The crab and butternut squash at Vixen's Wedding is a balance of textures. [NICK WAGNER/AMERICAN-STATESMAN]

I don’t often have the luxury of returning to dishes over and over again. The job dictates I get a good sense of as much of a restaurant’s menu as possible and, while I occasionally circle back if something was terrible, it’s rare that in the course of work I choose to indulge in something I already know is great. We’re talking about valuable stomach space and limited resources here.

I do make exceptions. This is one of them. Blue crab, interspersed with pomegranate seeds and roasted butternut squash tossed in habanero pickle. All layered under a crackling blanket of toasted poha rice. A perfect balance of creamy and crunchy textures and sweet, sour and spicy flavors; an exciting introduction to the seafood aspect of Goan cuisine.

As you can read in this week’s review of Vixen’s Wedding, the restaurant is an extension of the love chef Todd Duplechan formed for Goa while working at Indian chef Floyd Cardoz’s Tabla in New York City and furthered with his own travels. Goa, which was under Portuguese control for more than 400 years until it gained independence in 1961, is different than what most diners recognize as traditional Indian food. You’ll find beef and pork, vestiges of the Catholic Portuguese colonization, and more seafood than you’d expect from a Mughlai Indian restaurant, along with flavors influenced by the fruits and peppers the Portuguese traders introduced to the region.

Read more about the restaurant that Lenoir chef-owner Duplechan and his wife and partner, chef Jessica Maher, opened in the Arrive East Austin hotel in this week’s review.

Best Thing I Ate This Week archive

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