Pescado Al Ajillo (Fish in Garlic Sauce)

by Erica Dinho on April 30, 2010

Garlic is one of my favorite foods. If you are a garlic lover, like me, you have to try this dish.

Pescado al Ajillo is a popular dish on the Atlantic Coast of Colombia. I went to Cartagena de Indias on vacation about fifteen years ago. We visited a small family restaurant that specialized in traditional Colombian food and I ate robalo al ajillo with patacones. It was absolutely fantastic!

I made my fish with garlic sauce using swordfish, but you can use any other firm white fish fillets, such as snapper, cod, flounder, sea bass, halibut or tilapia. They will all work beautifully for this dish.

Buen Provecho!

(4 servings)

2 pounds swordfish or any other white fish, cut into 4 pieces
Salt and pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Garlic sauce or ajillo
7 garlic cloves, peeled
3/4 cup water
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 tablet chicken bouillon


  1. To make the fish: Season the fish with cumin, salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Place in a baking dish in which they fit in a single layer. Cover with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake until the fish is opaque throughout when pierced with a knife, 10 to 15 minutes. The timing will depend upon the thickness of the fillets.
  4. Meanwhile make the ajillo: Place the garlic cloves and water in a blender and blend for about 1 minute.
  5. Transfer the garlic mixture to a saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter and chicken bouillon. Stir well and cook for about 7 to 8 minutes minutes.
  6. Transfer the fish to a serving plate and pour the garlic sauce over. Serve warm.
If you like this page, you can say thanks by sharing it :-)

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pam April 30, 2010 at 2:41 PM

Oh my gosh! I love garlic and this sounds great! Thanks!


2 5 Star Foodie April 30, 2010 at 3:57 PM

This garlic sauce sounds fantastic with fish!


3 Ann April 30, 2010 at 5:00 PM

Wow, this sounds so yum. Must be delicious.


4 Lyndsey April 30, 2010 at 7:46 PM

I love garlic too. This sounds fantastic! Gorgeous picture of it!


5 Carla April 30, 2010 at 7:52 PM

I think I am closely related to Rachael Ray on this one, She says and so do I; “I(we) eat so much garlic that it oozes out of our pores and I (we) smell like garlic all the time” also to quote her ” two garlic lovers cancel each other out”. So I think this dish is perfect for us. I am always wondering about new ways to serve fish. Thanks.


6 Baking is my Zen April 30, 2010 at 11:05 PM

Garlic on anything brings it up a knotch!


7 Tangled Noodle April 30, 2010 at 11:18 PM

I can always count on you to present such fabulous recipes! This garlic sauce is just the kind of versatile flavor that I’d love to try with fish and other meats. I am bookmarking this (I’ve had to create a separate folder just for all of your dishes that I have to try!)


8 Oysterculture April 30, 2010 at 11:36 PM

Oh my goodness, this sounds like heaven – my husband will kiss my toes if I make this – gotta go and dash to the fish market.


9 MaryMoh May 1, 2010 at 1:59 AM

I love garlic too and use a lot on my cooking. It’s very good for health. Love your garlic sauce with fish. Looks very delicious.


10 Ivy May 1, 2010 at 4:00 AM

I’ve only become a garlic lover the past couple of years and the maximum I use for a recipe is 2 cloves :)


11 Chef E May 1, 2010 at 6:00 AM

Gosh Erica, that looks really good next to that perfect avocado! I love garlic and roast it, as well as make mufungo often! Keeps the vampires away, lol!

I am in a town down south on a trip, and we had all you can eat shrimp last night, and all I can say is “Ahhhh, good to be home”! :)


12 Sandi May 1, 2010 at 6:34 AM

Erica, the fish sounds wonderful…..I love garlic too and will have to try this the next time I make fish!


13 pierre May 1, 2010 at 8:55 AM

looks very good and with the avocado must be top !! cheers Erica form Pierre in Paris


14 nora@ffr May 1, 2010 at 8:59 AM

m a huge fan of garlic tooooo ericaa! this sound fantastic with some chicken!! :)
have a great weekend!!


15 zerrin May 1, 2010 at 10:17 AM

I’m a big fan of garlic, so I must try this soon.


16 Amy @ cookbookmaniac May 1, 2010 at 10:26 AM

I love fish and I love garlic. I will have to take up your recommendation and give this a whirl in my kitchen.


17 norma May 1, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Garlic is so important in my cooking also. When I see a recipe that calls for that beautiful little clove, I always double it.


18 tasteofbeirut May 1, 2010 at 4:29 PM

Oh wow, sounds almost identical to what we do except we don’t use stock, usually tahini.


19 Sook @ My Fabulous Recipes May 1, 2010 at 7:38 PM

Garlic is my favorite too! The garlic sauce sounds fabulous. I will have to try it sometime!


20 Joanne May 2, 2010 at 6:49 AM

I am a garlic lover as well, and I swear my hands always smell like it. Just a little. I’m definitely going to have to try this dish. No amount of garlic is too much for me!


21 Faith May 2, 2010 at 9:22 AM

I am absolutely a garlic lover, so I will definitely be trying this! Another lovely recipe!


22 Erica May 2, 2010 at 11:01 AM

Thank you so much guys :)


23 Barbara May 3, 2010 at 7:04 AM

Wow! That is a lot of garlic, Erica! It looks delicious though and given the amount of fish I eat, I will be very healthy!!


24 Angie May 3, 2010 at 8:33 AM

Love this garlicky fish dish, I have a ton of garlic, and this would be a good dinner this week, just have to get some fish!


25 Soma May 3, 2010 at 11:32 AM

Give me a garlic sauce anytime and I am in for the party. A delicious recipe.


26 Sandra G May 3, 2010 at 4:33 PM

Loooooove garlic, can’t live without it!


27 Anna May 4, 2010 at 11:57 AM

Mmmmm, This fish looks so yummy, and garlicky. I’m drooling now. :-D


28 Erica May 8, 2010 at 8:11 PM

Thank you everyone!


29 Kayla H April 20, 2013 at 10:22 PM

I’m 16 years old and I actually made this recipe and served it over BBQ fish. It was good, but probably could use more seasoning and more garlic. This was my first try with this, so I hope to make it better in the future.


30 Mónica March 24, 2014 at 8:56 PM

thank you, for such a delicious and simple recipe it was a great success. My parents loved the food come thank you


Leave a Comment

6 − = 4


Previous post:

Next post: