Saturday, April 23, 2011

Muqueca- Cambridge

Yes, this place still has blue holiday lights hanging up. Yes, there's tacky decoration of fish and nets on the walls. And yes, this place is inconvenient and out of the way. But does this place serve up a mean seafood stew? You bet.

When I searched the location, I was expecting Google to come back with a "closest T-stop" to the restaurant but none were to be found. That's when I called the restaurant and inquired about directions but all I got in return was "sorry maam, I'm not sure how you get here. I don't take the T to the restaurant." So with a little more research, we decided that Central Square on the Red Line was in fact our best bet. No wonder Google didn't return with any results. That's because the restaurant is located on some far off street that required an additional 10-15 minutes of walking after getting off the train. At any rate, if you are a seafood aficionado like myself, you will love this little restaurant that serves up authentic (well as far as I can tell) Brazilian fare at ridiculously reasonable prices.

Fried Frog Legs
As you can tell, we got a little carried away with appetizers and ordered 3 to share between the two of us girls. Frog is nothing new or foreign to me as I've had it quite a few times in Chinese restaurants as well as in Louisiana when I was down in New Orleans a while back. These frog legs were tasty but truthfully, over-fried. I liked the seasoning and the crunch on the outside of the little drumettes but the inside was dry.

Fried Yucca
I've never had yucca before so I was excited to try this root vegetable for the first time. It's comparable to potatoes but perhaps a little venous or stringy in texture. The yucca was probably pre-fried ahead of time in a large batch so they weren't remarkably hot nor fresh. What made this starter such a great success was that little cup of secret sauce in the middle. It's got a bit of a tang to it and tastes almost like cream cheese but way better. If I wasn't trying so hard to be slightly health conscious, I would've gladly drank the entire cup of sauce by itself. It was THAT good.

Brazilian Patties- Half Chicken, Half Cod
Continuing with the apparent trend of fried foods, we said why not order one more unhealthy item when we've already ordered two. Although these "patties" are similar to the Spanish croquettes in outside appearance, the inside is quite different. Instead of the moist, mashed potato-like, creamy filling found inside croquettes, the filling in these balls or "patties" was dry. The chicken was shredded and reminded me more of canned tuna than anything else (I do like canned tuna). The cod filling was also quite good but leans towards the saltier side.
Essentially the same picture below, but since I took another shot, I might as well post it.

Muqueca Completa- Fish, Shrimp, Mussels
Now for the star of the show and the dish that the restaurant is named after, muqueca. As yelpers forewarned, the muqueca does take a while to prepare so if you arrive famished, make sure to order something else to snack on first. The soup is a light tomato base with onion, cilantro, herbs and spices. Like I said, it's a light broth so the soup doesn't overpower the seafood and really allows the seafood to shine.The shrimp was thankfully not overcooked or rubbery and the fish was extremely tender. Along with the stew, they served a side of rice and this goopy orange colored sauce (obviously not a fan of the sauce). They are really generous with the amount of seafood they cook into the soup. The portion size is more than enough for sharing between two people, especially if you've order sides or appetizers.

Ambiance: 2 out of 5
Service: 4 out of 5
Food: 4 out of 5
Verdict: Seafood, seafood, seafood and more yummy seafood!


  1. It looks like a nice meal. I always appreciate a good seafood restaurant. I think you found one. I hope you enjoy the holiday weekend. Blessings...Mary

    frogs..... maybe not >.<

  3. go to taste of brazil and try their patties....

    SO F**KIN GOOD!!!!!!:P