Sautéed Skate with Root Vegetables and Blood Oranges
5Church, Charlotte, NC; Atlanta, GA; and Charleston, SC
4 to 6 servings
1 purple-top turnip
1 small rutabaga
1 sweet potato
1 large watermelon radish
3 blood oranges
3 large boneless skinless skate wings, cleaned and cut in half
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons fines herb, chopped
Prepare the vegetables: using a Parisienne scoop (or melon baller), scoop the turnip, rutabaga, sweet potato, and watermelon radish into balls. Alternately, the vegetables can be peeled and cut into 1 1/2–inch dice.
Using a knife, slice off the top and bottom of the blood oranges. Remove the skin and pith and separate out each orange segment, discarding seeds as you go. Squeeze what remains of the oranges to extract the juice.
Season the skate wings with salt and pepper to taste. Add the oil to a nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Place the skate, ridged-side-down, in the pan. Sauté for 4 to 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Flip the skate and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. Remove the fish from the pan and discard the oil. Cook in batches if you don’t have a pan large enough to fit all the pieces.
Add the butter to the pan. Add the prepared vegetables and lightly sauté until just cooked, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the blood orange juice, lemon juice, and whisk for 2 to 3 minutes until the sauce begins to thicken (the sauce should coat the back of a spoon when it has achieved the proper thickness). Add the blood orange segments and remove the pan from the heat (note: you might need to add a few drops of water if needed to bring the sauce together).
To serve, spoon the vegetables and sauce over the skate and garnish with chopped herbs.