Switch Up Weeknight Chicken Scallopini With Swordfish

Chicken scallopini is one of those dishes that's a perennial hit. Whether we love it for the lightly crisp flour coating or the zesty lemon caper sauce typical of a classic chicken scallopini recipe, the savory punch of this dish goes great with fish too. In fact, in the summer months, you may be seeking an even lighter version of scallopini, and we suggest replacing the chicken with swordfish. With all of the bright, tangy elements of scallopini taking center stage in the dish, using swordfish is an excellent way to switch up a weeknight repertoire that likely includes more meat and poultry and less fish. Plus, swordfish is a crowdpleaser: It has a mild, marginally sweet flavor and a meaty texture that rivals tuna. Saucing swordfish with lemon, butter, and wine is as organic a match as there is, and the capers elevate the swordfish with a punch of briny tang.

Scallopini hails from the Italian word scallopine and refers to thinly sliced cuts of meat cooked in sauce. Chicken scallopini is refined and sophisticated, and while it often seems daunting, it is, in fact, very simple. By replacing chicken with swordfish, you can reinvent this elegant classic and still retain the elements of the original. The meaty texture in swordfish holds up to a thin slice, and its fleshy composition resists any type of flaking you'd find in a less fatty fish. Bringing swordfish aboard as the headliner for this scallopini is a definite game changer.

Freeze swordfish for a perfectly thin scallopini

The best part about switching to swordfish in scallopini is that there is little to recreate and nothing to dress up. The first step to preparing the swordfish is to start with a fresh, skinless, boneless loin and stick it in the freezer for about 20 minutes. The idea is to partially freeze the swordfish steak to achieve a perfect slice with little resistance. Cut the swordfish with a sharp knife in about ½ inch slices. In traditional chicken or veal scallopini, it's often suggested to pound the meat flat, but you'll skip this step when using fish. Allow the sliced swordfish to sit out enough to become room temperature before dredging it in flour. Be sure to shake off as much of the flour as possible — You want a dusting of flour for uniform crisping, rather than anything resembling a coating.

In your skillet with oil, cook the swordfish for approximately two minutes per side. Remove the fish and begin preparing the lemon caper sauce by deglazing the pan with some white wine. Next, add the lemon juice and butter until melted, and toss in the capers and some parsley. Pour the sauce over the swordfish and garnish with some lemon wedges and more parsley or capers. For a little burst of color, try grinding some rainbow peppercorns on the final dish. Serve your swordfish scallopini with angel hair pasta with olive oil, or go a little heavier with some fettuccine and homemade Alfredo sauce.