Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Trofie pasta with swordfish

I just love this twisted, squiggly pasta shape called trofie. They're fairly easy to find in the U.S. now, but years ago that wasn't the case. They are commonly served with pesto in the region of Liguria, which is practically synonymous with the basil-based sauce. But trofie are used with many other types of sauces too.

I first encountered them years ago on the isle of Elba at a little trattoria called "Osteria del Noce" where a cat named Osvaldo had taken up residence and was seated upright on a chair at one of the large dining tables, waiting for his meal. I noticed everyone else at the nearby table had ordered the trofie dish. I figured it must be good, even though I didn't know what it was. So I ordered it and it was exquisite -- laden with teensy weensy clams and local shellfish that are impossible to get here in the states. So I'm offering up a different version that still tastes great and is economical too. For two people, I used only six ounces of swordfish and 1/2 pound of trofie - and there was still enough leftover for a cat too - not Osvaldo, but my resident feline Rocky.

Trofie Pasta with swordfish:
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup minced onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 green pepper, minced, optional
1/4 carrot, grated
1 28 ounce can tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 T. tomato paste
2 T. capers
1/4 cup green olives, pitted and smashed (I forgot to add them this time, but it was still good)
1/4 tsp. dried basil flakes
salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste
6 ounces swordfish, cut into chunks or small pieces

Saute onion, garlic, pepper, and carrot until softened. Add tomatoes, crushing with fingers. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 1/2 hour. This will make more than enough sauce for two servings. You may not want to use it all, but take some out to store or use
later. Add the swordfish and simmer for five minutes more before serving.


  1. Linda,
    My cat ate stir fry tonight but no photo!!! I have one of her eating spaghetti and meatballs with my husband when I was out and left them to fend for themselves, I will have to find it!

    I buy an olive oil for everday from Liguria called Carli Olio. I go thru a bottle every other week, and a big one!

  2. This is a wonderful post! A little story, a little good food, a little humor. Brava!

  3. Hi Linda

    Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving such a nice comment.
    We have tickets to see Lucia de Lammermoor in February!

    When we visited my husband's relatives in Italy quite a few made a pasta similar to this! It was delicious. My husband is from Calabria but many of his extended family moved north to Genoa.

    I've enjoyed looking at your blog also and will be back!


  4. WOW, That looks good,
    I love swordfish!! And the cat to!
    Thanks, Chuck