Pesce Spada Alla Bagnarese – Bagnarese Swordfish

SwordfishNemo bis CC BY 2.0

Pesce Spada Alla Bagnarese – Bagnarese Swordfish


– Penne – 1 lb. cooked al dente
– Sword Fish– 2 steaks, trimmed from bone and cubed into 1 ½” pieces
– Garlic – 4 to 5 cloves, rough chopped
– Olive Oil – about ½ a cup
– Graffiti Eggplant – 2 cut into squares 1” or smaller
(substitute: Japanese eggplant)
– Cherry Tomatoes – 2 large handfuls, halved
– Pine nuts – ½ cup, toasted in a hot sauté pan for about 1 to 2 minutes
– Capers – 2 teaspoons
– Parsley – large handful, flat-leaf, rough chopped
– Lemon – zested and juiced
– White Wine – about a glass and a half
– Kosher Salt and Black Pepper

How to make the Pesce spada alla Bagnarese:

Bring your pasta water to a boil.  And cook your penne noodles al dente.  Drain.  Reserve a cup of the now starchy cooking water.

In a large sauté pan, heat two glugs of olive oil over high heat.  Add your eggplant and garlic.  Cook until you get some color on the eggplant, then remove to a plate.  Salt and pepper your chunks of halibut.  Reduce heat to medium-high. Add a glug more oil in the same pan if needed, then sauté your swordfish until it starts to brown on all sides.

It should only take about 2 minutes or so.  Stir in ¾ of your parsley.  Add your wine and lemon juice, let the alcohol cook off a bit.  Remove the pan from heat and re-add your cooked eggplant and garlic.  Fold in your cooked penne, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts, capers, and remaining olive oil.

Adjust your seasoning with salt and pepper.  Now take a look at your sauce coating the noodles. If they look too dry, add a dash of more olive oil and some reserved cooking water.

Transfer to a large serving bowl, garnish with remaining parsley, lemon zest, and enjoy.

Serves 4

Pesce Spada Alla Bagnarese – Bagnarese Swordfish is a Regional recipe from Calabria

Enrico Massetti was born in Milan, Italy.
Now he lives in Washington, DC, USA.
Still, he regularly visits his hometown
and enjoys going around all the places in his home country
especially those he can reach by public transportation.

Enrico loves writing guide books on travel in Italy
to help his friends that go to Italy to visit
and enjoy his old home country.
He also publishes books on the Argentine tango dance.

You can reach Enrico at