BBQ Swordfish – A simple, light, fresh and healthy alternative barbecue recipe (gluten free; dairy free)
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BBQ swordfish – simple & ‘sophisticated’
What do you barbeque when the weather heats up? We like to make BBQ swordfish. Sure we eat burgers, sausages, chicken, Halloumi skewers and marinated vegetables too. But for something a little different, BBQ swordfish drizzled with tangy lime and topped with prawns, pistachio and a little fresh coriander hits an altogether more ‘sophisticated’ and adventurous spot.
Living by the sea and with a working harbour, we are lucky enough to have an amazing fish market on our doorstep. Although a little more expensive, we try to make the most of it.
I say ‘sophisticated’… but in reality, this dish is as simple to cook as it is light, fresh, colourful, delicious and healthy. And swordfish cooked with lime, pistachio and coriander has to be one of my all-time favourite flavour combos. There’s even a pan-based version on Gluten Free Alchemist, that we eat with salads, roasted vegetables, new or Hasselback potatoes.
So, if you have never tried making BBQ Swordfish, then why not give it a go?
How we BBQ at GFHQ
With summer’s getting apparently warmer, the opportunity to barbecue in the UK may well be increasing. And if you have a garden or space where you can cook outside, you may already have a barbeque. At GFHQ, we do have a larger barbeque that we use for entertaining, but we also have a Cobb BBQ, which may just be the best piece of outdoor equipment we have ever bought.
Seriously… If you have never seen one and love being outdoors, you have to check it out. The full range is on the Cobb website, but you can also get them on the high street in Lakeland, and at Amazon as well. And no… I haven’t been paid, or even asked to rave about the Cobb. It’s just genuinely amazing… Whether you choose to cook BBQ swordfish or anything else.
Why we love the Cobb BBQ
What makes the Cobb BBQ so fantastic, is that it’s small and easily transportable (packing neatly into a carry bag). So, it’s perfect for taking to the beach, park, on holiday or anywhere else. And that also makes it perfect for spontaneous BBQ trips AND for people who don’t have the benefit of a garden or their own outdoor space.
Aside from being very powerful and quick to heat (the ‘Cobblestones’ are hot and ready to cook within minutes and stay hot for a couple of hours), the external frame is reassuringly cold to touch. And… being compact in size, it can be placed in the centre of the garden table to cook communally. It is a genius piece of equipment.
What is Swordfish?
Swordfish is a white fish with a meaty, firm texture, mild in flavour and popular in the Mediterranean. It is usually sold as ‘swordfish steaks’ about an inch thick. Like all fish, it is a fantastic source of protein, but is also low in calories and rich in Vitamin B12, Vitamin D, zinc and healthy fish oils.
How to BBQ Swordfish
The firm, robust texture of swordfish makes it perfect for the BBQ. It will cook over hot coals in no time at all and because it is mild in flavour, is the perfect base for marinades and flavourings. But… keep a watchful eye. Cooked well, swordfish should be moist and succulent. Over-cooked, it will be dry and unappetising.
So, is there a trick to perfect BBQ swordfish? Well, not really… But as a rule of thumb and with a swordfish steak about an inch thick, brush with a little oil and sear hot and fast on one side for about 5 minutes until golden… Flip… Cook the other side for about another 5 minutes… If the edges are still looking uncooked, then use tongs to carefully rotate the sides over the heat. “Doneness’ comes with experience it would seem. Although for a more considered discussion of how to grill swordfish, I found this helpful post over at Serious Eats.
If you are making BBQ swordfish with lime, brush the raw fish (both sides) with a little olive oil, season with salt and pepper and a drizzle of lime juice. Keep the lime juice handy and add some more over the top as grilling progresses.
Can I still make this recipe if I don’t have a barbecue?
Yes… you can! The same recipe can be made using a griddle pan or if you don’t have one, a heavy-based frying pan. Flash-fry the accompanying prawns in the pan alongside and follow the other instructions as they are.
What does BBQ swordfish with lime, pistachio and coriander taste like?
Cooked to perfection, the BBQ swordfish should be moist and tender. Its white flesh will be delicately touched by a lime-citrus tang and the unmistakable flavour and aroma of fresh coriander. The softness of the fish is paired deliciously both for texture and taste with the earthy, slightly sweet crunch of toasted, crushed pistachio nuts. And the succulent, slightly chewy prawns are the icing on the top.
Tempted? You may never look back.
Of course, any good summer evening needs the company of a cooling drink. A little Prosecco… a glass of rosé… Or perhaps a chilled gluten free beer? With so many new gluten free beers coming to market, it seems we are finally being spoiled for choice.
This particular BBQ was accompanied by a great local Kent discovery… A gluten free craft beer from the Westerham Brewery in Kent, beautifully named ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’… Slightly floral, but moreishly refreshing.
More BBQ inspiration
If BBQ swordfish doesn’t tempt you, there is plenty more #freefromBBQ inspiration to be had. I’ve offered a few links below that may just entice you out into the garden. But please remember… If the barbecue is shared with gluten or other allergy-containing foods, make absolutely sure you take precautions against cross-contamination. Cook food more safely on clean foil and ensure foods don’t touch.
- BBQ Halloumi Skewers with Sweet Summer Veg – Gluten Free Alchemist
- BBQ Marinated Veg – Gluten Free Alchemist
- Chorizo & Cod Kebabs – Le Coin De Mel
- Veggie Burgers – Free From Fairy
- Pork Koftas – The Gluten Free Blogger
- BBQ Apricot & Nectarine ‘Steak’ Salad – The Peachicks Bakery
- Easy No Mayo Coleslaw – Easy Peasy Foodie
- Pina Colada BBQ Pineapple – Gluten Free Alchemist
For everything else and more, head over to our gluten free Recipe Index.
BBQ Swordfish with Lime, Pistachio & Coriander
- Baking tray
- sharp knife
- barbecue tongs
- serving plate
- large handful shelled pistachio nuts raw and unsalted
- 4 swordfish steaks
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt & fresh ground black pepper
- 1 lime juice only
- 4 tbsp coriander (fresh and chopped)
- 1 lime (additional) cut into half-moons
- 165 g peeled king prawns chilled or defrosted
Toast and chop pistachio nuts
- Pre-prepare your pistachio nuts by toasting on a baking tray in a hot oven (200 C/400 F/Gas 6) for about 10 minutes, turning intermittently to prevent burning.
- Cool the nuts and rough-crush in a pestle and mortar or rough-chop with a sharp knife. Set aside.
BBQ the prawns and fish
- Push the prawns onto skewers so that they are easy to BBQ.
- Brush the raw swordfish steaks with a little olive oil (both sides).
- Season the fish with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little lime juice.
- Place the fish onto the grill of a hot barbecue and cook for about 5 minutes on each side to seal and cook until tender. Drizzle a little more lime juice on each side during the cooking process.
- While the fish is cooking, place the skewered prawns to cook alongside, turning until pink, but still tender.
- Once cooked, transfer the swordfish steaks to a serving plate and drizzle with a little more lime juice.
- Top with the cooked prawns.
- Sprinkle with the crushed pistachio nuts and chopped coriander and a little extra black pepper.
- Garnish with the lime half-moons and serve.