Poaching is the best cooking method if you are using Rays or Skate which are less than 10-12 oz.
The wings of these fishes are very lean and quite thin. The moisture of poaching will keep the meat from drying out and becoming tough. If the wings are large, the wing can be cut across the grain making ground nuggets of meat, which resemble scallop meat. The nuggets can be added to a tomato based fish stew. They also can be added to a skewer with tomatoes, peppers, onions, shrimp and cooked on a grill.
One last note, when ever you are going to cook any fishes which are from the class “Chondrichthyes” (Rays, Skates, Saw Fish, Shark) you must keep in mind that these fishes have not evolved efficient kidneys for the removal of urea from their blood. This fact is the reason that these fishes will have an ammonia odor which is slight when fresh. If this smell is pronounced the fish is old. The ammonia present in the fish is neutralized by marinating in an acid based marinade such as lemon juice, tomato juice, lime juice or a vinegar for 20 minutes before cooking.
Coat Skate Wings in seasoned flour. Fry wings in butter until brown, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Serve the Skate Wing with an Anchovy Sauce. Anchovy Sauce Heat all ingredients over low heat until well blended. Pour sauce over the skate wings. To add color to the dish, serve with stir-fried red, green, and yellow peppers and onions.
Skate stewed in tomatoes with a touch of cinnamon. Serves 4.
Tools & Equipment:
1 large onion, roughly chopped
2 - 3 tbsp olive oil
4 - 6 skinned, deseeded and quartered Pommo Doree tomatoes, see note
1 heaping tbsp tomato paste
2 cups tomato juice or water, see note
2 - 3 sprigs of parsley, roughly chopped
2 - 3 sprigs of dill, roughly chopped
1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
a few dashes of salt and pepper, to taste
1 1/2 - 2 lb. skate, cleaned and cut into 1 1/2 inch wide pieces, see note
optional: 2 - 3 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
medium size non-stick pot with matching lid
Note: This meal is a cross between poached and stewed fish.
Skate, also known as Stingray, has gelatinous flesh that when cooked becomes a delicate white, yet, stringy meat, similar to that of lobster. It's sold fresh, year round, in the fish department in most grocery stores. After you've selected your piece(s), it's weighed and priced, by the fishmonger, according to its price per pound, or kilo: that's the cost you end up paying for the fish. Ask the fishmonger to "clean" the Skate for you; to remove and discard the grey skin, and to then cut up the remaining fish into 1 1/2-inches wide strips, or so. The grey skin, which is inedible, is slippery and hard to remove, especially if you don't have the proper tools; however, fishmongers do. "Some" fishmongers, though, don't do this service for you, unless you tell them; therefore, don't feel shy to speak up; otherwise, you'll have a hard time trying to do this at home. The white skin on the fish isn't removed, because it keeps the flesh intact during cooking; otherwise, the fish will fall apart. When all is said and done, a 2 1/2 pound piece of uncleaned Skate can yield about 1 1/2 - 1 3/4 pounds of edible fish; that's what you actually get and pay for. This is one reason why fresh fish is expensive; you end up paying for fish as a whole before it's cleaned.
What I particularly like about Skate, unlike most fish, is that there are no thin, prickly bones that can get caught in your mouth or throat. Its bones are thick and clearly visible, as well as removable; they look like connected and flattened pen ink tubes.
As for the tomatoes, fresh or canned (whole or diced) can be used. If using whole canned tomatoes: set a sieve over a bowl, remove the cores and then cut the tomatoes in half, discarding the seeds, but reserving the juices. Depending on the size of the tomatoes, fresh or canned, use more or less of them. If you don't have tomato juice, then use 2 - 3 heaping tablespoons of tomato paste instead of 1 tablespoon.
Prepare your tomatoes and then set them aside, reserving any juice. Wash the fish and then set it aside.
In a medium pot, sauté the onion with the oil over medium heat, for 5 - 6 minutes, or until wilted. Add in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously. Stir in the tomato pieces and any juices, and then increase the heat to high, stirring frequently as the mixture comes to a boil. Add in the 2 cups tomato juice or water, parsley, dill, cinnamon, salt and pepper: stir well. Bring the mixture to a boil and then drop in the pieces of fish. Add in a bit more water, if needed, to allow the liquid to barely cover the mixture. When the mixture returns to a boil, reduce the heat to low-medium, partially cover with matching lid and then cook for 25 - 30 minutes. Occasionally stir everything around gently without breaking apart the fish. Boiling the mixture on a simmer like heat, between low to medium, allows the heat to gently and thoroughly cook the fish, onion and tomatoes, without breaking them apart.
When finished: the fish should easily come off the bones; some of the fish, though, will fall off the bones during cooking and this is to be expected. The tomato and onions should still hold their shape; they should not have disintegrated. The sauce should be thin, not thick
Poached Stingray with Vegetable Julienne and Manilla Clams
Serve with 2000 Far Niente Estate Bottled Chardonnay
1 green zucchini
1 yellow zucchini
1 fennel bulb, stalks removed
1 stick lemon grass, cut in pieces
2 shallots, chopped
3 tablespoons, unsalted butter
1/2 bottle Far Niente Chardonnay
2 pounds Manilla clams
4 stingray filets
5 ounces heavy cream
1 bunch chervil, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Julienne the vegetables. In a medium pot, sweat shallots and lemon grass with melted butter. Add wine and stir. Add the clams. Cover. Let simmer for about six to seven minutes until the clams open. Remove the clams and shell them. Set clams aside. Reserve the liquid.
Take one stingray filet and lay it flat on your work surface. Place 1/4 of the vegetable julienne in the center and roll the filet around the vegetables, so that the filet appears to be "stuffed" with the vegetables. Lay the filet, seam-side down, in a baking dish that can be placed over direct heat. Repeat with the three remaining filets.
Strain the reserved liquid, mix with the cream and pour over the fish. Cook for ten minutes, over medium heat on the stove. Place one filet on each plate. Keep warm. Reduce the liquid to 1/3. Add the clams and the chervil and pour over the stingray. Serve immediately.
HINUGU DO SADA PARI (Barbeque Stingray Fish)
1 - 2 kati katis stingray fish
4 red onions > pound together
4 clove garlic > pound together
8 tablespoon tamarind juice
3 tablespoon cooking oil
8 - 10 pieces banana leaves
Clean fish and cut into long strips, about 2 - 3 inches thick.
Mix together the pounded ingredients with salt, cooking oil and tamarind juice.
Marinate the fish in the mix ingredients for 5 - 10 minutes.
Wrap the fish in the soften banana leaves and put over burning charcoal to cook.
NOTE: To soften the banana leaves, tear them into required sizes and dip them in boiling water until they turn dark green.
First Cut off the wings from the rest of the body and discard
the body. Then score the wings lightly and wash off and dry. Dry
rub the wings with a mixture of chili powder, green onions, cilantro,
horseradish, lemonzest, cayenne pepper, black pepper, parmesan cheese, provolone
cheese, basil, cinnamon, paprika, hominy, cream of wheat, cornflake crumbs,
captain crunch, bell pepper, and last but most importantly, sour cream. (the sour cream
really makes this dish!) It may sound complicated, but do it once or twice and it's really
a breeze. Let the ingredients soak into the flesh for two hours in the refrigerator. Cut the
wings into bite-sized chunks and skewer, alternating chunks of this
stingray heaven with chunks of ham and pineapple. Roast on a grill or barbecue for 10 minutes
both sides. It tastes really good with rice pilam and a good, dry sauvignon blanc. Bon apetit!
Have you tried any of these? Does soaking in citrus work well?
I cooked a skate once. Soaked it in water for a day to get rid of the urea. It cooked up alright I suppose. I guess cutting it in strips would have been a better idea than trying to do a big steak like I did.
Rather tough meat.
I have tried the last of the rescipes here and it was good.
I know what you mean about the Urea Smell the older skates or rays are not the best to eat because of just that , it can be over come with merinade but the young ones are the best. Soaking it in citrus really work's well. Bigger is not alway's better in this case.
I'm a firm believer in throwing absolutely everything you don't use back into the water. That way nature can recycle it. If you don't want to do that, you can bury it in your yard under a bush or shrubbery. I've done both and you should see how happy the potted plants on my deck are!
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