The whole roasted pig’s head was the correct choice to have made at the Whole Hog Dinner, but part of me has been wondering about the Guanciale-Wrapped Line-Caught Swordfish I passed up, especially after chef Tony Maws tweeted that it was so good it would make regular appearances on future menus. Improvising a similar dish would be the only way to satisfy my curiosity, and, not coincidentally, use up some ingredients in the fridge.
I started with the swordfish steaks I bought yesterday, marinating them in white wine, garlic, and chopped rosemary.
After an hour I wiped off the marinade and wrapped the steaks in the remaining dry-cured bacon I had bought for the coq au vin. (“What about the guanciale?” I hear you asking. You bring me the hog jowls, and I’ll make us guanciale. Until then, it’s plain ol’ bacon.)
I cooked the steaks on a very hot grill pan for three minutes per side.
I let the steaks rest for another three minutes before serving with lemony orzo (another refrigerator gift) and a simple salad of tomato and lemon cucumber finished with olive oil and sage-rosemary salt.
I was pleased with how this dish worked out. The swordfish was cooked to a perfect, moist medium, the bacon got crisp but not shatteringly so, and the acidity of the marinade cut through the richness of the fish and the fatty bacon. The garlic and rosemary were more of a background perfume than a distinct flavor; I’ll try increasing the amount in the marinade next time. The lemon in the orzo was a natural fit, and one of the reasons why I didn’t add lemon to the marinade. And you can never go wrong with fresh tomotoes and cucumbers.
I’ll be making the fish again, now I need to figure out some winter vegetable accompaniments.