We rub chunks of swordfish with coriander then grill them alongside eggplant, cherry tomatoes, and scallions.
Grilled Swordfish Skewers with Tomato-Scallion Caponata
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS Swordfish is a favorite fish to grill along the Mediterranean and beyond. It has a robust taste all its own and needs costarring ingredients with just as much oomph. For our skewers, we paired swordfish with a Sicilian-inspired grilled caponata. As a base for the caponata, we grilled cherry tomatoes, lemons, and scallions alongside the swordfish and added an aromatic blend of warm spices for a potent sauce to complement the fish. Once grilled, the lemon transformed from tart and acidic to sweet and rich. Rubbing the swordfish with a bit of ground coriander added complexity and provided flavor that popped with the tomato, scallions, and a final sprinkling of fresh basil. If swordfish isn’t available, you can substitute halibut. You will need six 12-inch metal skewers for this recipe.
1½ pounds skinless swordfish steaks, 1¼ to 1½ inches thick, cut into 1¼-inch pieces
5 teaspoons ground coriander
Salt and pepper
12 ounces cherry tomatoes
1 small eggplant (12 ounces), cut crosswise on bias into ½-inch-thick ovals
6 scallions, trimmed
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest, plus 2 lemons, halved
1½ tablespoons honey
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1. Pat swordfish dry with paper towels, rub with 1 tablespoon coriander, and season with salt and pepper. Thread fish onto three 12-inch metal skewers. Thread tomatoes onto three 12-inch metal skewers. Brush swordfish, tomatoes, eggplant, and scallions with 2 tablespoons oil.
2A. FOR A CHARCOAL GRILL Open bottom vent completely. Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal briquettes (6 quarts). When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour evenly over grill. Set cooking grate in place, cover, and open lid vent completely. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes.
2B. FOR A GAS GRILL Turn all burners to high, cover, and heat grill until hot, about 15 minutes. Leave all burners on high.
3. Clean cooking grate, then repeatedly brush grate with well-oiled paper towels until black and glossy, 5 to 10 times. Place swordfish, tomatoes, eggplant, scallions, and lemon halves on grill. Cook (covered if using gas), turning as needed, until swordfish flakes apart when gently prodded with paring knife and registers 140 degrees and tomatoes, eggplant, scallions, and lemon halves are softened and lightly charred, 5 to 15 minutes. Transfer items to serving platter as they finish grilling and tent loosely with aluminum foil. Let swordfish rest while finishing caponata.
4. Whisk remaining 2 teaspoons coriander, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, lemon zest, honey, garlic, cumin, ¾ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in large bowl. Microwave, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Once lemons are cool enough to handle, squeeze into fine-mesh strainer set over bowl with oil-honey mixture, extracting as much juice as possible; whisk to combine. Stir in olives.
5. Using tongs, slide tomatoes off skewers onto cutting board. Coarsely chop tomatoes, eggplant, and scallions, transfer to bowl with dressing, and gently toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove swordfish from skewers, sprinkle with basil, and serve with caponata.
Cutting Up Swordfish for Skewers
1.Using sharp knife, trim skin and dark lines from flesh.
2.Cut trimmed flesh into 1¼-inch pieces.