Growing up in New England, swordfish always signaled summer to me. I later learned that’s because these migratory predators swim up the Eastern Seaboard in summertime, looking for prey — likely squid. As a kid, swordfish was either grilled or broiled and served with a lemon wedge. It didn’t need much more than that, but a little green sauce never hurt a piece of fish.
This salsa verde is meant to be improvisational, making use of whatever herbs and aromatics you have on hand. If you don’t have cilantro, use basil or all parsley. Bump up the scallions if you like that onion-y bite — you get the idea. You won’t use all of the sauce for this meal, and that’s a good thing — you can dab it on your eggs, stir it into plain yogurt for a punchy dipping sauce, or spoon it over your next piece of fish.
1 one-pound piece swordfish
Kosher salt, to taste
1 cup jasmine rice
1/2 bunch cilantro, rinsed and trimmed
1/2 bunch parsley, rinsed and woody stems trimmed
1/2 bunch scallion greens, roughly chopped
1 one-inch piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, peeled and roughly chopped
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more as needed
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper
Light the grill. Remove the swordfish from the fridge, pat dry, and sprinkle with salt. Set aside. Place the rice in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse under cold water until the water runs clear. Place rice in a medium saucepan and cover with 2 cups cold water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until liquid is fully absorbed. Remove from heat and let rest, covered, for at least 10 minutes.
While the rice is cooking, make the green sauce: Roughly chop the herbs and combine in a blender or food processor with the scallion greens, ginger and garlic. Buzz to roughly combine and then, with the motor running, slowly add the olive oil until the mixture turns saucy. Add a tablespoon of the lemon juice and buzz again to combine. If the mixture is thick, add a little more olive oil, then taste and add salt.
When the grill is hot, place the swordfish on the hottest part of the grill and cook for about 6 to 8 minutes per side. Cut the zucchini into 1/2-inch vertical pieces, toss with olive oil and salt and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Pull the swordfish off the grill and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into 4 pieces. Fluff the rice and taste the green sauce and adjust seasoning as needed.
To serve, pile the rice on a serving platter and place the swordfish pieces down the center of the rice. Arrange zucchini around the edges, then spoon salsa verde over the top of the fish. Sprinkle with salt and serve with additional sauce on side.