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Paccheri with Swordfish, Capers and Olives

Paccheri with Swordfish, Capers and Olives


For the Swordfish:

  • 1 ¼ to 1 ½ pounds swordfish, cleaned of skin and bloodline and diced ½ inch

  • Salt and pepper

  • About 1 ½ teaspoons EACH (½ palmful) fennel seeds and/or pollen and dried oregano

  • ½ (milder) to 1 (spicy) teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 3 tablespoons EVOO

For the Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons EVOO

  • ¼ cup large capers in brine, drained

  • 1 cup pitted green and black Italian olives, chopped

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 cup white wine or stock

  • 3 cups halved cherry tomatoes

  • 1 cup passata or tomato puree

To Serve:

  • Salt

  • 1 pound or 500 grams paccheri (fat, smooth short-cut pasta, similar to rigatoni)

  • ½ cup chopped parsley and mint combined

  • EVOO, to drizzle, if dry or to taste


Serves: 4

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for pasta.   

For the swordfish, toss raw fish with seasonings and chill until ready to cook.

For the sauce, heat EVOO, 3 turns of the pan, in a large skillet, combine capers, olives and onions and sweat a few minutes to soften. Add garlic, stir in wine and reduce by half. Add tomatoes and passata and occasionally stir, about 15 minutes.  

To serve, season boiling water liberally with salt. Cook pasta 1 minute less than the package directions and reserve some of the starchy cooking water before draining or transferring the pasta to the sauce.   

While pasta cooks, heat EVOO, 3 turns of the pan, add seasoned fish and lightly brown. Add to sauce.   

Toss pasta, cooking water and sauce together for 1 full minute and serve. Add herbs and drizzle with more EVOO, if you like.