Wow. This is the best thing I have cooked this year. And I owe most of it to a chap called Thom Dinsdale who inspired this recipe by sending me his miso risotto recipe. My initial reaction was that it sounded a bit weird and terribly savoury. But. With the addition of the miso skate, some pak choi and Japanese mushrooms it was superb.
Go for a glass of wine after work. Have two or three by mistake and then hot foot it to Waitrose where you know they have all the clever Japanese stuff that this needs. Then realise that they have run out of white/shiro miso paste and hurredly improvise by panic buying sachets of miso soup. Next visit the fish counter and realise that cod is very expensive and opt for skate wings instead. Especially when they are on offer for £1 a wing. Result.
Then pick up some mirin, rice wine, pak choi, spring onions, oriental mushrooms including shitake and those tall skinny ones and zoom home as fast as possible because you've promised your house mate and their friend dinner. And you're already an hour late before setting off!
Burst in. Grab all the saucepans and get cooking. Drink more wine as if it is Lucozade before a big match. Add miso sachets to a pan and add 2/3 of the amount of water that they suggest. Dissolve. Then remove enough liquid to use as a marinade and place in the fridge until cooled having added mirin and some rice wine vinegar. When it is cooled chuck in the skate wings. If you do this when the liquid is hot the fish will get poached.
Add more water to the miso liquid and let it heat up into the stock for the risotto. I added some dried mushrooms to give it more depth as well.
Add oil and butter to a heavy Le Crueset pan and melt. Chop several spring onions and dramtically add to the pan. Imagine you are Keith Floyd at this moment and don't be afraid of miming a voice over. Feel free to spill most of the contents on the floor. And don't worry about setting fire to the tea towel. There are plenty more in the drawer. Add a chopped onion and sweat until soft.
Then add risotto rice and let it crackle for a bit. Then pour in half a glass of rice wine or sake. Let this hiss away and then add the miso soup as if it was stock, one ladle full at a time. Stir continously. It will become wonderfully thick and glossy.
Remove skate wings from marinade and place in a foiled baking tray on top of some spring onions to act as a matress.
Pour over remaining marinade and add some ginger and a bit of chilli. Bake for 12 minutes in a hot oven until the flesh is cooked and the edge has browned.
Whilst the skate is cooking, do the stir fry by adding the pak choi and mushrooms to a wok with some oil and blasting over a high heat. Douse in a glug of soy towards the end and drizzle with sesame oil.
Amalgamate all the elements and serve. It is so delicious and relatively easy to do. My next evolution of this dish is going to involve using Gastronomy Domine's recipe for miso glazed recipe that includes the shiro miso paste that I couldn't get in Waitrose but adapting it for skate cheeks and skate wing to accompany the risotto. I can't wait to give it a go.
We still love to go on trips around the UK, staying in BnBs or camping in search of a good meal or two - hence, Around Britain with a Paunch. Quite often the trips have been prompted by Diana Henry's Gastro Pub Cookbook. Here's where we've been to: