It is a father’s privilege, nay, a duty to torment his son. Drawing inspiration from watching his favourite episode of his favourite show for the eighty-eleventh time it was with the greatest pleasure that I served him up one of his favourite Octonauts: Herb-Encrusted Swordfish Salad.
I’ve had a bit of a thing for seafood lately, cooking up some amazing Moreton Bay Bugs and getting experimental with a delicious fusion dish I like to call Surf’n’Turfinara. It was on one of trips to the seafood markets that I spotted some swordfish steaks and knew I had to give them a go.
The first thing that struck me was their appearance. They are similar in shape to a lamb loin chop and are about the thickness of a good rib-eye steak. My wife is always telling me to eat more fish and here I’d found a piece of fish that looked like a steak? I had to have it.
Step one was to put together the spice rub for the herb-crust. I wanted to keep things really simple this time rather than try and come up with something complex and so I went with a rub of pink Himalayan rock salt, freshly cracked black pepper, and fennel. But not before brushing the swordfish with red-wine vinaigrette. The aroma of the herbs was already amazing and so as I had a little time on my hands I decided to light up some Gidgee charcoal in my trusty Weber kettle. I wanted to get a really good sear before chopping it up for the swordfish salad.
I filled my charcoal baskets with those little magic blocks, lit them and waited for them to ash over. Once they were ready, it was time to get started on the grilling.
The plan was always to have vine-ripened cherry tomatoes in the salad, but I decided at the last minute to throw them on the grill remembering how delicious they had been the last time I grilled some. When tomatoes are cooked they both sweeten and soften so I knew that the juices would add to the dressing. And that seared flavour… oh man…
Once the tomatoes were starting to split it was time to move them to the outside of the grill and put on the swordfish. The great thing about swordfish is it’s texture and consistency: it doesn’t ‘sink’ into the grill like other types of fish and you can flip it with a pair of tongs like, well, a steak. A few minutes on either side and you’re all done.
Of course, a Herb-Encrusted Swordfish Salad needs a salad. While the fish is resting, quickly whip it up. For this one I used a rocket/baby spinach mix, red onions, sliced kalamata olives and a small bottle of drained capers. I cubed my swordfish but you could easily thinly slice it. Gently toss the fish through the salad and dress with some more red wine vinaigrette.
To serve, simply put some on a plate. Alternatively, put the lot in a large bowl, put it in the middle of the table and let people help themselves.
Here’s a tip: the ‘tail’ end of the steak is quite oily and so tastes very ‘fishy’. If you’re sensitive to this, cut off the tail and just use the rest.
What’s your favourite fish to cook on the BBQ? Let me know in the comments below!