FRIED SKATE WINGS

SKATE IS A FAVORITE OF MINE.  THE WINGS, WHICH USUALLY COME BONED, CAN BE POACHED OR BROILED, BUT THE EASIEST WAY TO PREPARE THEM IS TO PAN-FRY THEM.  SALT AND PEPPER AND A QUICK DREDGE IN WONDRA FLOUR RESULTS IN CRISP-EDGED FILLETS OF A DELICATE WHITE FISH WITH A SATISFYING FIRMNESS AND A FLAKEY TEXTURE.  THE CLASSIC FRENCH SAUCE IS A BEURRE NOIR WITH CAPERS, PARSLEY OR BOTH.  WHEN I COME UP WITH A MORE SATISFYING ALTERNATIVE, YOU'LL BE THE FIRST TO KNOW.  BUT FOR NOW, WHEN YOU SEE THEM IN THE FISH STORE, GRAB THEM UP (THEY'RE CHEAP) AND FRY THEM UP.  SERVE THEM WITH STEAMED NEW POTATOES AND A BUTTERY PILE OF FRESH SPINACH.  WASH THEM DOWN WITH MUSCADET.    

 2 lbs SKATE WINGS, FILLETED
 WONDRA FLOUR
 6 tbsp SWEET BUTTER
 ½ cup SALT-PACKED CAPERS
 1 tbsp WHITE WINE VINEGAR
 8 LEMON WEDGES
 PARSLEY AND/OR CHIVES

1

MELT 6 TBSPS OF UNSALTED BUTTER IN A SMALL SAUCEPAN. POUR INTO A GLASS MEASURING CUP. WHEN THE BUTTER COOLS A BIT, SKIM OFF THE MILK FAT ON THE SURFACE. POUR CLARIFIED BUTTER BACK INTO THE SAUCEPAN, STOPPING SHORT OF THE MILK SOLIDS ON THE BOTTOM.

PUT THE CAPERS IN A SMALL STRAINER AND RINSE OFF THE SALT. DRY ON A LAYER OF PAPER TOWELS.

DRY THE SKATE WINGS WITH PAPER TOWELS. SALT AND PEPPER. SPREAD WONDRA FLOUR ON PAPER OR A DINNER PLATE.

HEAT ABOUT 1/3 CUP OF VEGETABLE OIL IN A LARGE, PREFERABLY NON-STICK PAN.

WHEN THE OIL IS VERY HOT, DREDGE THE SKATE WINGS, A FEW AT A TIME, IN THE FLOUR. PAT OFF EXCESS AND GENTLY LAY THE SKATE WINGS IN THE PAN. DO NOT CROWD. YOU WILL HAVE TO FRY THEM IN BATCHES.

FRY ABOUT 3 MINUTES PER SIDE. REMOVE TO A WARM PLATTER TILL THEY ALL ARE DONE.

HEAT THE CLARIFIED BUTTER TO A NUT-BROWN COLOR. OFF THE HEAT, TOSS IN THE CAPERS AND/OR CHOPPED PARSLEY. THEN POUR IN ABOUT 1 TSP OF VINEGAR.

SPOON A LITTLE OF THE BEURE NOIR OVER THE SKATE WINGS AND SERVE THE REMAINDER ON THE SIDE.

GARNISH WITH CHOPPED HERBS AND LEMON WEDGES.

SERVES 4-6

Ingredients

 2 lbs SKATE WINGS, FILLETED
 WONDRA FLOUR
 6 tbsp SWEET BUTTER
 ½ cup SALT-PACKED CAPERS
 1 tbsp WHITE WINE VINEGAR
 8 LEMON WEDGES
 PARSLEY AND/OR CHIVES

Directions

1

MELT 6 TBSPS OF UNSALTED BUTTER IN A SMALL SAUCEPAN. POUR INTO A GLASS MEASURING CUP. WHEN THE BUTTER COOLS A BIT, SKIM OFF THE MILK FAT ON THE SURFACE. POUR CLARIFIED BUTTER BACK INTO THE SAUCEPAN, STOPPING SHORT OF THE MILK SOLIDS ON THE BOTTOM.

PUT THE CAPERS IN A SMALL STRAINER AND RINSE OFF THE SALT. DRY ON A LAYER OF PAPER TOWELS.

DRY THE SKATE WINGS WITH PAPER TOWELS. SALT AND PEPPER. SPREAD WONDRA FLOUR ON PAPER OR A DINNER PLATE.

HEAT ABOUT 1/3 CUP OF VEGETABLE OIL IN A LARGE, PREFERABLY NON-STICK PAN.

WHEN THE OIL IS VERY HOT, DREDGE THE SKATE WINGS, A FEW AT A TIME, IN THE FLOUR. PAT OFF EXCESS AND GENTLY LAY THE SKATE WINGS IN THE PAN. DO NOT CROWD. YOU WILL HAVE TO FRY THEM IN BATCHES.

FRY ABOUT 3 MINUTES PER SIDE. REMOVE TO A WARM PLATTER TILL THEY ALL ARE DONE.

HEAT THE CLARIFIED BUTTER TO A NUT-BROWN COLOR. OFF THE HEAT, TOSS IN THE CAPERS AND/OR CHOPPED PARSLEY. THEN POUR IN ABOUT 1 TSP OF VINEGAR.

SPOON A LITTLE OF THE BEURE NOIR OVER THE SKATE WINGS AND SERVE THE REMAINDER ON THE SIDE.

GARNISH WITH CHOPPED HERBS AND LEMON WEDGES.

SERVES 4-6

FRIED SKATE WINGS
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