Recipe adapted from Executive Chef James Walter, Pesce Blue Restaurant, Portsmouth, NH.
4 skate wing portions
2 cups Arborio rice
4 tbsp butter
6 cloves garlic, sliced thin
2 large shallots, finely chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
(preferably low sodium; you’ll be adding salt later)
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
8 stalks asparagus, shaved with a peeler (should resemble ribbons)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper for seasoning
- Prepare the risotto: Melt butter in a heavy bottom saucepan on low, adding the garlic and shallots. Lightly cook until they are very aromatic and translucent; add the rice cook until it has a nutty aroma while trying not to brown it. Add the wine and stir constantly; season the risotto with salt and pepper as it is cooking. When the wine has cooked down, add the broth and stir. When the broth has cooked down, add half the water and stir. Constantly stirring will result in a creamy risotto. When the rest of the water has cooked out, add the lemon zest and cheese and remove from heat.
- Sear the skate wing. Place a large sauté pan (big enough to hold all four skate – you might need two pans) over high heat. When the pan is hot enough, add about 3 tablespoons of canola oil and continue to heat; if the oil is not hot enough, the skate will stick to the pan. Season fish with salt and pepper and place in the pan to sear.
- Reduce heat and sear until the skate is golden brown. Flip the skate over and turn off the heat. The skate should finish cooking from the residual heat.
- Dress the asparagus with the lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Divide the risotto onto four plates, place the skate on top with the seared side up and top it with the asparagus. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over the top and serve.