Seared Swordfish with Tomato-Saffron Coulis

July 11, 2010
3 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

Really great fresh seafood doesn't need much adornment - a squeeze of citrus, a fresh, bright salsa, or a simple sauce is generally all you need in my book. I love swordfish and tomatoes together, and came up with this dish as a way to use up some imperfect but still tasty heirloom tomatoes I brought home from the farmers' market. I used a mixture of red and yellow-fleshed varieties; feel free to use whatever tomatoes strike your fancy (and keep in mind that particularly wrinkly ones will be more difficult to peel). - lastnightsdinner —lastnightsdinner

Test Kitchen Notes

If it's possible to fall in love with a recipe, call me smitten. I hadn't eaten swordfish in about twenty-five years, until a photo of this caught my eye, as did the appealing sauce. We were not disappointed! The saffron and sherry vinegar made the tomato sauce flavors "pop" and the tomatoes pair so well with the meaty fish. It is a beautiful dish, one that I will make again with our local halibut, a more reasonable choice for us here in San Diego. Meanwhile, if this were my recipe, I would turn around and submit it to the heirloom week theme. This is a winner. –Lizthechef —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 4 swordfish steaks, about 5-6 oz. each
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • grapeseed oil
  • 1.5 pounds fresh tomatoes, preferably heirloom
  • 2 tablespoons chopped shallot
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • a big pinch of saffron
  • 1 teaspoon Sherry vinegar
  • finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
  1. Trim the swordfish steaks to remove any bloodlines. Pat them dry and refrigerate, uncovered, for about an hour before cooking.
  2. Cut an “x” in the bottom end of each tomato. Briefly blanch the tomatoes in boiling, salted water and shock them in an ice bath. When cool enough to handle, core, peel, and seed them, then cut them into chunks.
  3. Place the tomatoes in a blender, add the shallot and garlic, and puree until smooth.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a small, shallow pan over medium-low heat. Add the saffron, crumbling it with your fingers, and toast in the oil until fragrant. Remove from heat and carefully pour it into the tomato puree. Whiz the mixture in the blender again to incorporate, then pour the mixture out into the pan. Warm over medium heat until slightly reduced.
  5. Season the swordfish steaks with salt on both sides. Add a thin film of grapeseed oil to the bottom of a skillet and warm over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the swordfish steaks two at a time and sauté until browned and just cooked through, about 3-5 minutes per side, depending on thickness.
  6. Stir the sherry vinegar into the coulis, season with salt to taste, and divide the sauce among four plates. Place the seared swordfish steaks on top, and finish with a sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley.
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  • Lizthechef
  • EmilyNunn
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  • theicp
  • dymnyno

13 Reviews

sword F. October 6, 2011
oh amazing.....from simple to elegant....
adamnsvetcooking September 6, 2010
We made this for dinner on Friday. It was delicious. We very much enjoyed making the tomato saffron coulis.
lastnightsdinner September 6, 2010
Thanks, I'm so glad you liked it!
Lizthechef July 22, 2010
Looking forward to testing your recipe this weekend. My fish market finally got the wild, sustainable stuff in stock.
lastnightsdinner July 22, 2010
Thanks, Liz - I hope you enjoy it!
EmilyNunn July 14, 2010
This makes my mouth water, literally. I just ate dinner! How is that possible? It is.
lastnightsdinner July 15, 2010
Aw, thank you :)
healthierkitchen July 12, 2010
Lovely!! This might even make a swordfish eater out of my husband.
lastnightsdinner July 15, 2010
Thanks - let me know if it works ;)
theicp July 12, 2010
I love saffron but never seem to use it when I cook! Saving this one!
lastnightsdinner July 12, 2010
Thank you! I think saffron and seafood work particularly well together :)
dymnyno July 11, 2010
Wow...great recipe and fabulous photo....youv'e really drawn first blood with this one!
lastnightsdinner July 12, 2010
Thank you!