Small Maccheroni with Swordfish

Maccheroncini al Pesce Spada

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as a main course

Appears in

How to Cook Italian

How to Cook Italian

By Giuliano Hazan

Published 2005

  • About

This dish epitomizes what I have found true Sicilian cooking to be: fresh tasting, light, and fragrant.


  • ½ medium yellow onion
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • pounds ripe tomatoes
  • Salt
  • 1 pound maccheroncini
  • 1 pound swordfish
  • 6 to 8 sprigs flat-leaf Italian parsley
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Fill a pot for the pasta with at least 6 quarts water, place over high heat, and bring to a boil.
  2. Peel and finely chop the onion. Put it in a 12-inch skillet with the olive oil. Place over medium-high heat and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onion turns a rich golden color, about 5 minutes.
  3. While the onion is sautéing, peel the tomatoes and coarsely chop. When the onion is done, add the tomatoes, season with salt, and cook until the tomatoes are no longer watery, 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. Add about 2 tablespoons salt to the boiling water, put in the pasta, and stir well. Cook until al dente.
  5. While the tomatoes are cooking, remove the swordfish skin and cut the fish into ¼-inch dice. Finely chop enough of the parsley leaves to measure 2 tablespoons. When the tomatoes are done, add the swordfish, season with salt and pepper, and cook briefly until the fish is cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the parsley, cook for another minute, and remove from the heat.
  6. When the pasta is done, drain it well, toss with the sauce, and serve at once.