I adore this recipe. I can’t remember when I first had it, but all variations are winner with me (skate often being paired with a burnt butter and caper sauce) – this being my all time favourite though. It isn’t difficult but you’ll need to focus at the job at hand, as the sauce doesn’t sit particularly well.
ROAST SKATE WITH SHERRY SAUCE AND CRISPY CAPERS (Raya con salsa de jerez)
From Casa Moro: The Second Cookbook by Sam and Sam Clark
- 4 portion sized skate wings, about 250g each
- 7 tablespoons olive oil
- sea salt and black pepper
- 200ml fino sherry
- 1 banana shallot or 2 normal shallots, finely chopped
- a sprig of fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves, preferably fresh
- 5 tablespoons sherry vinegar plus 1 extra teaspoon
- 10 black peppercorns
- 200g good quality unsalted butter, cold, cubed
- 80g capers in salt or vinegar
- 4 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
- 1 lemon, quartered
Prepare and fry the capers in advance: Wash the capers in a sieve for 1 minute under running water and then leave in a bowl of cold water for an hour, changing the water a few times. Heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil in a small saucepan over a medium heat and when hot add the drained capers. Fry, stirring occasionally until they are slightly browned and crisp. Remove from the heat and drain on kitchen paper. Set aside.
To make the sauce, place the fino, shallots, thyme, bay leaves, 5 tablespoons vinegar and the peppercorns in a small saucepan and simmer over a low to medium heat until you are left with roughly 5 tablespoons of liquid. Strain out the thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns. Over a very low heat, stirring constantly, add the cubes of butter, a couple at a time. Add more when the butter has melted into the sauce and continue to do so until all the butter has been used and a light emulsion has formed. Add the remaining teaspoon of vinegar and a little salt and taste. Keep warm over the stove or in a bain-marie while you cook the fish, but do not allow to bubble.
Preheat the oven to 220/ 425/ Gas 7. When you are ready to cook the skate heat a large metal roasting tin on the hob until very hot. Season the skate with salt and pepper on both sides, drizzle the olive oil into the pan to cover the bottom and gently ease each wing into it, shaking the pan as you do so to prevent the skate from sticking. Place in the oven for about 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the wing, or until cooked through. Remove and serve immediately with the warm sauce spooned over the fish, the capers and chopped parsley sprinkled all over, and lemon wedges on the side. Delicious with braised spinach or chard and new season’s boiled potatoes.