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Swordfish with tomato sauce

by | May 30, 2023 | Recipes | 0 comments

Each time the commercials come in with the good news that they have a broadbill swordfish or two on board, we get super excited and usually the first thing that comes to my mind is my swordfish with tomato sauce recipe.

Nestled at the confluence of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, the coastal waters surrounding Cape Town provide an ideal habitat for Swordfish. They are very deep hunters feeding largely on deep sea squids and fish species. Although not generally specifically targeted, the hake and kingklip fishing vessels count it as a lucky by-catch on their long lines.

Swordfish with tomato sauce is know as Emperador con Tomate in Spain and is a classic dish full of Mediterranean flavours – of course there are many versions of the tomato sauce but this one is a winner for me – I just love the combination of tomato and smoked paprika and I added a little fish sauce, which is not normally found in the classic Spanish version but I just love the extra umami it adds to the dish

I used a tin of organic Italian tomatoes in the sauce, if you choose to use fresh, you’ll need 5 to 6 peeled and chopped ripe tomatoes. This is a saucy dish so you can serve it with fresh crusty bread, roast potatoes and roast veg.

Fresh swordfish is delicious but frozen works just as well – always defrost slowly before cooking (ideally in the fridge over night) and be sure to dry the fish with paper towel thoroughly – this way you’ll get nice brown steaks and they will absorb all the super flavours from the olive oil and tomato sauce. Drying the steaks also ensures you won’t get that dreaded “fishy” taste when the steaks are ready to eat.

We sell our Swordfish in 500g and 1kg packs and I would use 150g to 200g per person depending on how many sides you are serving with the dish. We served 2 swordfish with tomato sauce with this recipe and had left overs for the next day and they were super tasty.

REcipe – Swordfish with tomato sauce

serves 2 to 3


  • 500g Swordfish
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely dined
  • 2 -3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tin tomatoes – I used organic diced in tomatoe juice
  • 1 cup veggie stock
  • 1 to 2 tsp sugar
  • juice of half a lemon
  • couple splashes fish sauce (optional)
  • salt and pepper
  • handful flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbs capers



  1. Sauté the chopped onion in 2 tbsp. olive oil for about 5 minutes, do not allow to brown
  2. Add the garlic and sauté for 5 minutes
  3. Add the paprika and sauté for about 2 minutes, stirring so the paprika does not burn
  4. Add the tomatoes, veggie stock and sugar, simmer until thick, about 15 minutes
  5. Add the fish sauce, lemon juice, heat all together and season to taste
  6. Finish the sauce with parsley


  1. Cut your swordfish into steaks
  2. Pat dry, brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper
  3. Fry on a medium to high heat for 90 seconds/side

To serve top the Swordfish steaks with the sauce, more chopped parsley and the capers.

  1. Hi Jules, your newsletters are awesome, and I love the pictures and instructions you have posted on the website!! All…