Make Escabeche with any firm fish or shellfish. Swordfish, marlin, tuna, trout, sardines, anchovies and mussels are all ideal. This is a sensational dish worthy of top billing in your culinary répertoire. The very thought of Escabeche has me licking my lips and dreaming of the San Sebastian restaurant, at the old port behind the Parte Vieja, in the town that bears its name. Go there, eat Escabeche and eat fish because, and my friend Phil would agree, that’s what you do when you’re beside the sea!
4 Swordfish steaks
200ml olive oil
4 tablespoons any good-quality vinegar, (I use white Balsamic)
½ lemon, juice only
1 carrot, finely diced
½ Spanish red onion, sliced wafer thin
4 cloves garlic, crushed with salt
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons coriander seeds, crushed
1-teaspoon cumin seeds
1-2 star anise
12 white peppercorns
3 tablespoons dry white wine
Salt, to taste
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
Place in a medium sized saucepan: the oil, vinegar, lemon juice, carrot, onion, garlic, bay leaves, saffron, coriander, cumin, star anise and peppercorns. Bring the pan to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes on a low heat. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Season the swordfish and sear quickly on both sides in a non-stick frying pan with a little olive oil. Do not over-cook the fish; it must remain raw in the middle. Remove the fish and set aside to cool. Reheat the pan, deglaze with the white wine and add the pickling juices. Stir briefly to amalgamate then remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
Slice each piece of fish into four and place in a deep dish. Pour over the cooled pickling juice, season with salt to taste, cover the dish with cling film and place in the refrigerator for at least two hours or overnight. Add parsley just before serving.
Warm boiled potatoes, a green undressed salad and lots of crusty bread compliment this dish beautifully.
click this link for a printer friendly version of this recipe: