This month's Secret Recipe Club

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned Jenny’s Savour the Senses blog. Jenny is a relatively new but prolific blogger, with a variety of recipes, from tasty breakfasts, interesting appetizers, lots of fish recipes, fun guest blogs (her mom was a longtime IBMer like me, now turned chef, my dream!), beautiful photos, and lovely quotes. It was fun to read her recipes and challenging to decide what to select and make.

I originally planned to make Jenny’s Loaded Baked Potato Soup, but I ended up making too many changes, all good, but didn’t feel it kept in the spirit of the original recipe (my soup). No problem, I easily decided on one of her many fish recipes, Mahi Mahi and Creamy Polenta with Roasted Tomato Vinaigrette. Unfortunately in landlocked St. Louis, fish options are limited. Whole Foods had no mahi mahi, but the fishmonger suggested swordfish as a nice alternative. Sold.

This recipe is spot on in taste and texture. The cooking time for the fish is FLAWLESS. I don’t think I’ve ever cooked fish so perfectly, with the key being to take it off the flame when it is pink. Really pink. It DOES continue to cook to the just the right doneness. Jenny’s recipe uses asparagus, which Craig doesn’t care for, so I subbed fennel that she says was used in the original Emeril recipe. I roasted half an onion with the tomatoes and fennel, a nice addition, threw in a big spoonful of capers, and used red wine vinegar in the vinaigrette. I had leftover polenta in the ‘frig from my favorite polenta recipe from Frank Stitt, so I didn't make Jenny’s recipe, which I’ve included here. I’m sure it’s great. This is a keeper dinner.
Swordfish and Creamy Polenta with Roasted Tomato Vinaigrette
(recipe reflects my changes)
Serves 2

1 1/3 Cwater
1 1/3 C low-fat milk
1 T butter
2/3 C polenta
2 T Creme Fraiche (or low-fat sour cream)
1/3 C parmesan cheese
1 1/2 T olive oil (plus extra for cooking)
Half a large onion, sliced thickly
Fennel bulb, sliced, core discarded
3 ripe roma tomatoes, sliced in half
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch fresh rosemary
2 t dried thyme
Spoonful of capers
1 1/2 T red vinegar
2  6 oz. swordfish fillets

Preheat the oven to 350F.

For the polenta:
In a large saucepan, bring the water, milk and butter to a boil, then add 1/2 tsp salt to the mixture. Quickly whisk the polenta into the mixture, stirring constantly until any lumps are gone (about 4 minutes). Reduce heat and let the polenta simmer, partially covered, stirring every 10 minutes, until the polenta is smooth and thick (about 45 minutes).

For the fish:
While the polenta is cooking, cover a sheet pan with heavy duty foil and spray with olive oil. Arrange the onions, fennel, and tomatoes (cut side down and at the end of the pan), and on the pan and sprinkle with capers. Drizzle olive oil over the vegetables and season with 1 tbsp chopped rosemary, 1 tsp thyme, salt and pepper.
Bake at 350F until the tomatoes are very tender (about 20-25 minutes). Set aside three tomato halves for the vinaigrette and cover the pan with foil to keep warm.

For the vinaigrette, process 3 tomato halves, 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, vinegar, 1/8 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper in a food processor until smooth.

Once the polenta is thick and smooth, add the Creme Fraiche (or sour cream) and parmesan, then stir until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper and keep warm over low heat.

Season each fish fillet with salt, pepper, thyme and chopped rosemary.

Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a sauté pan and sear the fish until cooked through, 3 minutes per side. USE THE TIMER, AND DO NOT COOK ANY LONGER, because it will cook longer as it rests and you plate up the rest of the dinner.
Split the polenta between two dishes, top each with a fish fillet and drizzle the tomato vinaigrette over each. Place the roasted vegetables around the fish and serve. 

Print Recipe


  1. Although I was skeptical when Denise removed the fish from the heat it ended up perfect. This is defintely a keep meal.

  2. That looks very tasty. I've never had swordfish any other way than grilled.

  3. This looks great and I'll bet the potato soup rocked too!

    1. Thanks Debbi, the soup is my most popular post on my blog! =)

  4. I haven't had swordfish in years but it was always a fave and this recipe has me wanting to get some and make this, great SRC choice.

    If you haven't already, I'd love for you to check out my Group 'A' SRC entry: Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites

    Cook Lisa Cook

  5. Hmmm! Swordfish! I haven't eaten it in so long because of it's mercury content but man do I miss it!

  6. Daniel, Debbi, Lisa, Gigi, thanks so much for looking at this yum recipe. Lovelovelove SRC! Come back again to check out other posts.


  7. it's so fun trying out a new recipe and having it turn out perfectly:) looks fab!

  8. What a beautiful fish dish - like all the changes you made especially using fennel, so fragrant. Great pick for SRC!

  9. This looks delicious! Love the idea of polenta and fish together. Nice to meet you and how fun that you lived in Omaha.

  10. Although the I can't have swordfish right now since I'm pregnant, I can't wait to try this in a few months! Yum!

  11. I"m always looking for great ways to prepare fish. we're lucky here in san diego always having fresh fish available. I'm stopping by from SRC but I'd love if you check our my new site February is oranges month so if you have any orange recipes, we'd love if you'd link up!

  12. Aw thank you for all the nice things you had to say! It is great hearing that my recipe instructions worked out well, I get nervous sometimes writing up recipes because I am worried they will not be accurate! Glad you liked the recipe, I love swordfish I bet yours was delicious!

  13. Sarah, thanks for stopping by. SRC is such a wonderful resource for finding new and kitchen-tested recipes.


  14. Jeannette, thank you. This was a lovely dish and the fennel does add nice texture and flavor.


  15. Julie and Erin, thank you for visting Eat Laugh Love, and nice meeting both of you thru SRC.

  16. Betsy, lucky you to have easy access to fish. I will check out your orange month. Thanks for stopping by - and - letting me know about your link up.


  17. Jenny, you've set the standard for preparing fish in our house. Perfect directions. Best to you in your new job (and Hawaii - wow!).


  18. Nice recipe. I always used to follow the "Canadian" cooking method of fish prep that James Beard made famous (cook it 10 minutes per inch of thickness) but too often that's overkill - the fish is overcooked. This looks perfect - and I love polenta, so for me it's a nice combination of flavors. Thanks for this.

  19. Interesting how cooking methods have changed over time, like what temp pork is now cooked to compared to what it was 20 years ago. Thanks for stopping by.




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