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Stuffed Italian swordfish recipe

Stuffed Italian swordfish recipe

  • Recipes
  • Ingredients
  • Seafood
  • Fish
  • White fish
  • Swordfish

The thin slices of swordfish are stuffed with a breadcrumb, parsley, caper and cheese mixture and rolled before being baked in the oven.

2 people made this

IngredientsServes: 6

  • 800g swordfish, cut into thin slices
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 150g dried breadcrumbs
  • 15g chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon salted capers
  • 30g grated Ragusa cheese (Caciocavallo cheese)
  • extra virgin olive oil

MethodPrep:35min ›Cook:10min ›Ready in:45min

  1. Cover the swordfish slices with cling film and pound them lightly with a mallet or rolling pin. Cut them in half and lay them out in a work surface. Add salt to taste.
  2. Put 100g of breadcrumbs, salt, pepper and the chopped parsley in a bowl and mix. Rinse and chop the capers and grate the cheese. Take 3/4 of the breadcrumb mixture and add the capers, cheese and sprinkle olive oil over everything. Place this mixture on the swordfish slices.
  3. Roll up each swordfish slice and close with a wooden skewer. Put the swordfish rolls in a lightly oiled baking dish and spoon the rest of the breadcrumbs over the rolls.
  4. Bake in the oven at 220 C / Gas 7 for about 10 minutes. Serve the dish hot.

Ragusa cheese

If you cannot find Ragusa cheese, use Parmesan or Pecorino instead.

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Sicilian Stuffed Swordfish with Cherry Tomato Sauce

On a work surface, cut the swordfish steak in half crosswise, then cut each half horizontally into four 5-by-3-inch slices. Gently pound the slices 1/8 inch thick. Cover and refrigerate.

In a heatproof bowl, soak the raisins in hot water until softened, about 10 minutes, then drain. In a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, shaking the pan, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.

In a shallow dish, soak the bread in the wine and fish stock for 10 minutes. Gently squeeze the bread almost dry. Finely chop the bread and transfer to a bowl. Gently stir in 2 tablespoons each of the raisins and pine nuts, 2 tablespoons of the fennel fronds, 2 of the anchovy fillets, 1 tablespoon of the capers, the Parmesan cheese, cinnamon and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper.

Lay the swordfish slices out on a work surface and season with salt and pepper. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the filling in the center of each slice and roll up like a cigar, folding in the sides as you go. Secure the rolls with toothpicks.

In a large skillet, heat 1/4 inch of olive oil. Lightly dredge the swordfish rolls in flour, shaking off the excess. Fry 4 of the rolls over moderately high heat until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining rolls. Wipe out the skillet.

In the same skillet, heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the crushed red pepper, the remaining anchovy fillet and 1 teaspoon of capers and cook for 30 seconds. Add the cherry tomatoes and crushed tomatoes and cook over low heat until thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in the olives, 1 tablespoon of the fennel fronds and the remaining 1 tablespoon each of pine nuts and raisins. Season with salt and pepper.

7. Add the swordfish rolls to the sauce. Cover and simmer over low heat, turning the rolls a few times, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Set 2 rolls on each plate, remove the toothpicks and spoon some sauce on top. Garnish with the remaining 1 tablespoon of fennel fronds and serve.

Pan Seared Swordfish Ingredients:

Great quality ingredients is where it all starts for this Sicilian style swordfish. Find out what's real fresh from your fishmonger. Swordfish is obviously the first choice, but this recipe works equally well with Tuna. It's always nice to have a plan B when going shopping!

This Italian swordfish recipe calls for 1.5 pounds of swordfish, but the amount of fish really doesn't matter. Feel free to double or triple the olive and caper sauce if making more fish. It's really that easy!

  1. 2 plum tomatoes are needed - Feel free to use any type if plum tomatoes are unavailable or look bad.
  2. 2 Tablespoons of capers - I always have capers on hand, they add so much flavor to a variety of dishes. The Trader Joe's variety is a great value.
  3. ¼ cup of fresh parsley - I like flat leaf but curly is fine too
  4. ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil - for the olive and caper sauce
  5. ¼ cup of olive oil for pan searing the swordfish steaks
  6. 6 cloves of minced garlic
  7. ¼ tsp of kosher salt
  8. ¼ tsp of black pepper
  9. ¼ chili tsp of crushed red pepper flakes - totally optional as the dish is excellent either way
  10. Final ingredient is ¾ cup of mixed olives. Buy the high quality ones from the olive bar. Oil cured olives are so good in this! Avoid the stuffed olives and make it easier for yourself by buying pitted olives. As you can see in the pic below I forgot to do that.

Swordfish involtini

Chef and author Dominique Rizzo shares her recipe for swordish involtini with SBS Radio’s Matteo Rubbettino. This recipe is a rendition of the sarde beccafico, stuffed baked sardines, although this is my version using swordfish and the similar delicious stuffing of garlic, pine nuts, raisins, pecorino cheese and onions. Sarde beccafico is a typical Sicilian dish made of fresh sardines filled breadcrumbs, olive oil, pine nuts and raisins. Beccafico, which is a little bird similar to a quail, literally means beak figs.



Skill level


  • 520 g swordfish
  • olive oil
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp parsley
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1 tbsp raisins, chopped
  • 4 tbsp flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 small red chilli

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Cut the swordfish into thin slices and flatten. Season with olive oil, salt and pepper.

Place the breadcrumbs and parsley in a bowl.

To prepare the filling, heat 2 tbsp of oil in a frypan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until it softens. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Transfer the onion and garlic to a bowl, along with the pine nuts, raisins, flat-leaf parsley and chilli, and toss to combine.

Place ½ tbsp of filling onto a piece of swordfish. Carefully roll up the swordfish. Repeat with the remaining swordfish and filling. Dip the rolls in the seasoned oil. Coat in the breadcrumbs. Fry in hot oil for 2–3 minutes. Transfer to a baking tray and bake in preheated oven for 7 minutes.

Stuffed Italian swordfish recipe - Recipes

The popularity of swordfish in Sicily goes back to the ancient Greeks when they established colonies on the island. But this preparation has four of the hallmarks of cucina arabo-sicula , the folkloric cuisine believed to be vestigial of Arab influence from the Arab-Sicilian era of the ninth to twelfth centuries: the use of citrus, grilled skewers, stuffed food, and the pine nut-raisin combination. Swordfish are caught mostly in the Strait of Messina, the Malta Channel, and the Sicilian Channel, and most Sicilian swordfish recipes come from the province of Messina. The first variation is typical of the monzù , the French-influenced master chefs who served the nineteenth-century Sicilian aristocracy, while the second variation is a popular one in Calabria, the toe of the Italian “boot.” This recipe is adapted from J. C. Grasso’s wonderful book The Best of Southern Italian Cooking published in 1984. Buy the swordfish in one piece, freeze slightly then cut into 12 slices.

Yield: Makes 6 servings
Preparation Time: 50 minutes

2 1/2 pounds swordfish steaks, cut into ten to twelve 1/4-inch thick slices

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 3/4 cups fresh bread crumbs

2 salted anchovy fillets, rinsed and chopped

1 large garlic clove, finely chopped

1 tablespoon golden raisins or currants

2 tablespoons freshly grated pecorino cheese

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons freshly grated caciocavallo or pecorino cheese

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

1 garlic clove, very finely chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

30 bay leaves, soaked in tepid water for 30 minutes

3 large onions, quartered and separated

Twelve 10-inch wooden skewers

1. Flatten the swordfish slices further between 2 pieces of wax paper, pounding with the side of a mallet or heavy cleaver very gently so you don’t break through the flesh. Each slice should be about 5 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches.

2. Prepare the stuffing: heat the olive oil in a medium-size skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, stirring, about 7 minutes. Combine the cooked onion with the bread crumbs, anchovies, garlic, pine nuts, raisins or currants, pecorino, lemon juice, orange juice, and egg. Mix well and salt and pepper to taste. Divide the filling among the swordfish slices and roll up, folding in the edges and squeezing the rolled involtini in your hands. Secure any opening with toothpicks. Dip the involtini in olive oil.

3. Prepare the coating: stir in the beaten egg and the 2 tablespoons olive oil together and set aside. Combine the bread crumbs, caciocavallo or pecorino, oregano, parsley, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Dredge the swordfish rolls in the egg mixture and then roll in the bread crumb mixture to coat lightly.

4. Prepare a hot charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill for 15 minutes on high.

5. Double skewer all the ingredients: hold 2 skewers parallel to each other about 1/2 inch apart between your thumb and forefinger. Slide the involtini interspersed with bay leaves and onion sections onto each set of skewers, putting 2 involtini on each set, and drizzle with olive oil. Place the skewers on the grill and cook for about 6 minutes on each side. Serve with lemon wedges.

Variation 1: Replace step 2 with the following: Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a medium-size frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 pound finely chopped boneless, skinless, swordfish steak and 1 cup finely chopped onion and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Drizzle in 6 tablespoons brandy and salt to taste. When the brandy has evaporated, remove the filling to a mixing bowl and stir in 6 tablespoons bread crumbs. Divide the filling among the swordfish slices. Lay one of 12 slices of mozzarella (about 1 pound) on each swordfish slice. Divide 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil and 1 teaspoon fresh or dried thyme among th slices and pepper them all to taste. Roll up the slices, folding in the edges and squeezing the rolled involtini in your hands. Secure any openings with toothpicks. Dip the involtini in olive oil. Omit step 3 and the bay leaf and onion garnishes.

Variation 2: Replace step 2 with the following: Mix 1 3/4 cups bread crumbs 2 tablespoons dried oregano 4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped 1/4 cup capers 1/4 cup freshly grated pecorino cheese 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley and 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice. Salt the swordfish slices and dip them in olive oil. Divide the stuffing among the swordfish slices. Roll up the slices, folding in the edges and squeezing the rolled involtini in your hands. Secure any openings with toothpicks. Omit step 3 and the bay leaf and onion garnishes.


  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons table salt
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 pounds swordfish steaks, cut 1/2 inch thick

Light a grill or preheat the broiler. In a small bowl, mix the lemon juice with the salt until the salt dissolves. Stir in the oregano. Slowly whisk in the olive oil and season generously with pepper.

Grill the swordfish steaks over high heat (as close to the heat as possible), turning once, until cooked through, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer the fish to a platter. Prick each fish steak in several places with a fork to allow the sauce to penetrate. Using a spoon, beat the sauce, then drizzle it over the fish. Serve at once.


Salmoriglio is a traditional Italian marinade, typical in Sicily and Calabria, prepared in several ways, depending on the regions of Italy (to read the whole story and recipes of Salmoriglio, click here). Today, we prepare a lemon and fresh oregano, perfect to flavor fish and vegetables.

First, rinse the fresh oregano leaves, then dry with paper towel. After that, mash oregano with a pestle along with 1 clove of garlic and 1 pinch of rock salt until obtaining a smooth paste. Now, squeeze the lemon and sift the juice, then combine with the olive oil and water. Finally, combine all the ingredient and whisk until consistent.

Alternatively, blend all the ingredients in a mixer.

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Preheat a griddle pan until very hot, or preheat the barbecue, allowing the flames to die down (approximately 40 minutes).

For the salmoriglio, place the oil and water into a bowl and whisk together until thick and emulsified.

Add the lemon juice and a pinch of salt, to taste.

Add the garlic, oregano, celery herb or leaves (if using) and parsley and stir well.

For the swordfish, brush the swordfish generously with oil and season well with peperoncini or crushed dried chilli and salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Place the swordfish onto the griddle pan or barbecue and cook for four minutes on each side, or until completely cooked through.

For the dressing, place the lemon juice and olive oil into a clean bowl and mix well.

Add the red chilli, garlic and season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

To serve, place the swordfish steaks onto four plates and drizzle over the salmoriglio. Place a large spoonful of the chopped tomatoes next to each portion of swordfish.

Top each pile of tomatoes with a little of the sliced roasted peppers, followed by some red onion and a sprinkle of preserved lemon pieces.

Drizzle the dressing over the tomato salad and sprinkle over the chopped coriander.

    1. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat) or preheat broiler. Whisk olive oil in top of double boiler over simmering water until heated through. Gradually whisk in fresh lemon juice, then 2 tablespoons hot water. Add chopped fresh parsley, chopped garlic and oregano and cook sauce 5 minutes to blend flavors, whisking frequently. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Remove sauce from over simmering water.
    2. Lightly brush swordfish on both sides with sauce. Season fish with salt and pepper. Grill or broil until just cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer fish to platter. Spoon remaining sauce over and serve.

    So easy so good. I used Cod and it worked like a charm.

    I've been preparing this for 15 years and it's always well received. A simple, basic recipe where the fish is the star. Your side dishes need color and fuller flavors.

    I made Debra's Marcella Hazan recipe (posted under reviews) last night and it was delicious! Got tons of compliments. Didn't bother with the original recipe since it got lukewarm reviews. Thanks Debra!

    I made this last night and it was well-received (although I only did 2 8oz swordfish steaks and adjusted amounts accordingly) It would be nice if the sauce was a bit thicker, but we can't win them all. Goes especially well with the Italian Stuffed Mushrooms. (

    As good as this is, Marcella Hazan's recipe is better. Try it and compare: 1/4 cup olive oil, 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, 3 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano, 1 tablespoon salt and freshly ground pepper. Mix lemon juice and salt, add olive oil and oregano and pepper to taste. Grill swordfish unadorned and drizzle sauce immediately after fish is off grill. Make sauce as fish grills because freshness is key. No need for parsley or garlic.

    I'll give this another try. However, I expected the flavor of the sauce to be more pronounced. I marinaded the swordfish for a couple of hours. The sauce did not do for the swordfish what my oregano-oil-lemon marinade does for chicken. I think I'll stick to the North African rub from this site or the olive relish topping for swordfish.

    This was good, but not quite in the four fork category. I prepared the swordfish on a stove top grill pan it might be better on a real fire or under the broiler. I was cooking for two and was too tired to divide all the ingredients by three, so I made the full sauce amount and put the rest of it on a pound of spaghetti, planning on leftovers for pasta salad. There weren't a whole lot of leftovers, although my husband is a pasta hound. Still, the sauce was very tasty, a bit more interesting than basic olive oil and garlic sauce, which I make all the time. Finally, I didn't happen to have a double boiler to make the sauce, and I don't see why it's necessary. It turned out great in my smallest all-clad pot directly on the stove.

    I agree with the cook from NYC this is the best swordfish ever! Grilled it along with split beefsteak tomatoes sprinkled with olive oil and sea salt and asparagus packets and served with feta and mint rice. Used fresh oregano and mint from the garden which I think made a significant difference. Awesome meal, definitely fit for company and easy, too.

    Similarly, I made a few enhancements to the recipe. I marinated in the sauce like many others. I also added a few scallops (marinated as well) and sauteed them. Topped the swordfish with both the reserved sauce and scallops. As always, doubled the garlic. Served with couscous. A very good recipe- the sauce taste and acidity went well with the swordfish and scallops.

    Yes, it is very good. Marinate, don't marinate, I marinated for a half hour with lemon juice, zest, garlic, olive oil, and salt. The best part was that it came out crunchy on the outside, and juicy on the inside in the broiler. Very tasty. I will make it for my husband when he gets home from Seattle.

    This is unbelievably good. I marinated the swordfish for about an hour and then grilled. It is the best swordfish my husband and I have ever eaten.

    Great recipe! Could be a little spicier in my opinion. The extra sauce that you put on the swordfish after grilling and just before serving is key!

    I ran short of time so I couldn't marinate the fish. Next time for sure I'll marinate. I served it on a bed of arugala (with the extra sauce as a dressing) and broiled thick sectioned tomatoes with salt, pepper and fresh pressed garlic which I cooked under the broiler with the fish. That was great and the colors of the presented dish was stunning. Tried the bow-tie pasta recommended by another commentor and loved the combo. I will definitely look forward to Marinating! This is a keeper.

    Good swordfish recipe. I marinated the fish for about an hour which kept the fish juicy even though it was more like 3/4" thick and took awhile to brown slightly under the broiler. Served with bow tie pasta with butter and fresh grated parmesan.

    Wow, Wow, Wow, Wow (four Wow's) After incorporating the suggestions of two of the previous reviewers (marinate in the sauce for a couple of hours & slice the garlic don't chop) I added one of my own (double the garlic) and this recipe just rocked . Suttle so you still taste the fish but you just can't get enough sauce on each bite. This recipe is a winner, that I will make over and over again. Can't wait to try this on center cut loin chops.

    Don't eat fish- but RAVE reviews from the table, and many requests for the recipe.

    This is one of the better recipes I've made from this website. Nice to make when company comes over, always impresses.

    Loved this! I was making the meal for two, but made the salmoriglio sauce as it was called for. I marinated as was suggested (great idea!) and what sauce wasn't being for used for the fish, I used as the base for twice baked potatoes. What a hit! With a simple salad of bibb, endive and red onion, the meal was great. Even my not-swordfish-loving husband gave it thumbs up.

    This was surprisingly good, in spite of my first attempt to grill on my gas grill, and then broiling it because I ran out of gas! I agree with previous posters that it's probably better to broil this. I used lots of fresh oregano from my garden and marinated it for 2 hours in the fridge. I really liked the way the lemon flavor came through, and my husband said it tasted like something from a restaurant. The fish was moist and tender and delicious. Will make again.

    Stuck in the city without access to anywhere to plunk a bbq, we broiled the swordfish and were pleasantly surprised by how tasty this recipe was. We served it with a mushroom risotto, but next time will serve it with something that won't steal the limelight. Next time we'll also marinate and use more oregano. Great, easy, delicious.

    This was good, but as far as it being an excellent "recipe," it is just basic common sense cooking.

    Stuck with the basic recipe and the results were terrific.

    This was delicious! We just bought a gas grill and I was unsure about it. I forgot parsley and used basil instead. Iɽ love to try fresh oregano next time. Fantastic! We felt like champion chefs.

    I have been making this ever since the special Italy issue came out years ago. Jo said it best -- "It doesn't get much better than this." We absolutely love this sauce on swordfish as well as other fish. I will have to try fresh oregano next time, and will also marinate the fish as recommended by one person. Absolutely perfect recipe!!

    It doesn't get much better than this. This is the perfect balance of flavor without masking the character of the fish. I used fresh oregano and marinated the fish for 2 hours as the previous reviewer directed. Trust the Scicilians to get seafood just right!

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