Poached Wing of Skate with a Confit of Vine Grown Baby Plum Tomatoes

To me, skate has one of the most subtle, interresting tastes, but it is often passed by because it looks like a lot of work for a little amount of fish. This is a real shame, as it is quite easy to prepare. Once you have learnt the technique in preparing it, I will bet it is on your shopping list often.

Wine Recommendation: Why not try a Southern France Rosé from the Roussillon region, which should offset the confit and compliment the fish. See The Mixed Case for details.

Portions: 4 portions

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 4 x 8oz (240g) skate wings (skinned and wing one removed)
  • 1/2 kilo vine grown baby plum tomatoes (must e sun ripened for the best flavour)
  • 3 banana shallots, halved and finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 6 marinated (not salted) anchovy fillets
  • 8 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 level tablespoons of caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) olive oil (preferably Spanish, as it has a wonderfully oaky flavour)
  • 1/2 cup of flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Poaching Liquid

  • 2 pints (1.138 litres) of cold water
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 leek, cleaned and chopped
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf

To Serve

  • roughly chopped parsley

Method

  1. Poaching Liquor: In a large pan place water and poaching ingredients, and gently simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the vegetables and bay leaf and set it aside for poaching wing of skate later.
  2. Baby Plum Tomato Confit: Fry the shallots and garlic in olive oil on a low heat so as not to colour the onion, but to soften. Then as the Thyme. Bay leafs, halved tomatoes, caster sugar and coarsely chopped anchovy fillets, simmer gently on a low heat.
  3. Skate: Return the poaching liquid to a gently simmer (in a pan large enough to hold the skate wings). At this point gently place your skate wings in the poaching liquid. They should take about 6-8 minutes to cook, be careful not to over cook the skate. Serve:
  4. To Serve: Remove the skate from liquor and place on the serving dishes. Remove the thyme sprigs and bay leafs from the tomatoes confit, season to taste with a little sea salt and ground pepper. Spoon the confit of tomatoes over the skate and finally garnish with coarsely chopped parsley.
Chefs Tips:
  • Always make sure you cook skate soon as possible after purchasing as it does not keep fresh for long.
  • Dutch tomatoes are usually grown in heated green houses and do not have the wonderful summery flavour of sun ripened tomatoes.
  • Spanish olive oil (of quality) is matured in oak casks so it has a wonderfully oaky flavour to it.
  • Marinated anchovies are readily available in most supermarkets and are much more subtle in flavour than the salted variety.