Wednesday, July 8, 2009
I love to buy fresh wild fish from local super markets. Since I do all my grocery shopping in the beginning of the week, I try and cook the fish the same day I buy it so that it actually tastes fresh. There was some really beautiful skate on sale this week and since I had not cooked with it ever since culinary school, I decided to give it a shot. I open it up, ready to dredge and pan-fry and then I realize... I HAVE TO FILLET IT! Oh GOSH! It's been years since I filleted my own fish and I did not even know where to begin with skate! My Internet was down so I could not even look it up! With a sharp fillet knife in hand I went at it...slowly and carefully...eventually the rhythm worked its way back into my hands and I started to remember how it was done...I ended up with 3 beautifully white fillets (the first one, was a bit of an embarrassment actually...oops).
I decided I wanted to go back to my French Culinary roots with this recipe. It was very simply dredged in corn meal and seasoned with salt and pepper. Served with a simple sauce made of shallots, garlic, parsley and lemon juice. Some sauteed seasonal veggies and a glass of wine created the perfect dinner for us!
*Here is a link detailing how to fillet a skate fish*
Pan-Fried Skate with Shallots, Garlic and Lemon Juice
1 lb Skate, yielding to fillets
Corn Flour for Breading
Salt and Pepper
Olive Oil for Frying
2 Shallots, diced
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
Juice of half a Lemon
3 Tablespoons Parsley
3 Tablespoons Butter
1. Heat oil in a non-stick pan.
2. Season the corn flour with salt and pepper and dredge skate making sure to cover all surfaces.
3. Once the oil is preheated, pan-fry the skate about 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown. *Remember the second side always takes a bit less time. This is a very delicate fish so try not to overcook it or it will be rubbery*
4. Once complete, place fish on paper towels to absorb some of the excess oil. Wipe out pan.
5. Add the butter, shallots and garlic to the pan over medium heat. Let this sweat a little bit, you want them to be tender not caramelized.
6. Turn off the heat and add lemon juice, parsley and remaining butter. Once butter melts, immediately spoon sauce over fish and serve!
*In case anyone is interested, for the veggies, I just sauteed some sliced red peppers with garlic and some frozen Trader Joe's French Green Beans I had. It's a simple and healthy side dish for almost anything.*