Skate with Black Butter and Caper Sauce

I first tasted skate when working for Margaret Fulton at Woman’s Day magazine. Margaret was keen on burnt butter sauce (beurre noir) and introduced me to classic French dishes such as brains with burnt butter and oeufs au beurre noir (poached eggs in tart cases with burnt butter). It’s also excellent combined with sage and drizzled over gnocchi.
But don’t be misled by its name because the butter should turn a toasty caramel brown and not be the least burnt (or black). 


About this Recipe

By: Sheridan Rogers
 Ask your fishmonger to fillet and skin the skate wings – they may need to be ordered in advance as they’re not always available. To prepare the lemon segments, peel a whole lemon, making sure to remove the white pith as you do so. Using a small sharp knife, cut segments of the flesh from half the lemon. Use remaining half of lemon as a garnish for the skate.




Serves 2

  • skate, 2 x 160g-180g, filleted and skinned
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • unsalted butter, 60g
  • capers, 2 tablespoons, rinsed and drained
  • lemon juice, 1 1/2 (30ml) tablespoons 
  • lemon segments, from 1/2 lemon
  • chopped Italian flat leaf parsley, a handful



Season the  wings to taste with salt and pepper. Heat the butter in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat until foamy and starting to colour. Add skate wings and capers and cook until turning golden, about  2 minutes each side. Transfer to warm serving plates.
Add lemon juice and lemon segments to the butter in the pan, stir to combine, then drizzle over skate. 
Scatter with freshly chopped parsley and serve.  Good with blanched asparagus and steamed baby potatoes.