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Recipe for :

Skate with Black Butter

Rick SteinThis is one of Rick Stein's recipes which we have kindly had permission to reproduce which should whet your appetite for more.

To find out more about Rick Stein and his passion for seafood have a look at his biography page.

Cookery SchoolFor further information about his restaurants in Padstow, Cornwall, his new cookery school and to see his online delicatessan visit his website - click here.

If you would like to know more about his books and how to order them have a look at our Bookstore which will also link you to Amazon for further details.


900 g (2lb) skate wings
1 quantity Court-bouillon (see below)
15 g (½ oz) capers
For the Black Butter
175 g (6 oz) salted butter
50 ml (2 fl oz) red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

Makes 1.2 litres ( 2 pints)

300 ml (10 fl oz) dry cider
1.2 litres ( 2 pints) water
85 ml (3 fl oz) white wine vinegar
2 fresh or dried bay leaves
12 peppercorns
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 carrots, roughly chopped
2 sticks celery, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon salt



  • Place all the ingredients into a large pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 minutes. To complete the infusion of flavours, leave to cool before using.


  • Cut the skate into four portions and place in a wide shallow pan. Pour the Court-bouillon over the fish, bring to the boil and simmer very gently for 15-20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the skate. Drain the fish and keep it warm on a serving dish. Sprinkle with the capers.

Black Butter:

  • Melt the butter in a frying pan. When it foams, begins to go really dark and smells nutty, pour in the vinegar. Add the parsley, and let it boil for a minute or so then pour over the fish. Serve at once with plainly boiled potatoes.

Serves 4

Rick Stein

To visit Rick Stein's website which features regular new recipes - click here