Hongeo (skate) is a popular fish in Korea. It’s eaten in many ways -- raw, fermented, steamed, pan-fried, spicy, mild, etc. Today, I’m showing you how to make hongeojjim (steamed skate).
This delicate, firm fish has a mild, sweet taste and a unique texture. It has cartilage -- no bones. You can make this recipe with a whole wing or serving size pieces by cutting along the line of the cartilage. When cooked, the strands of flesh peel right off the cartilage, making it very easy to eat.
Traditionally, the skate is air dried for a couple of days for a chewier texture and more intense flavor before being steamed. I skip that process and simply steam fresh skates.
Steaming the fish is very easy! If you don’t have a steamer, you can place a large plate over a small heat proof bowl or ramekin in a large pot so the plate sits high enough not to touch the water.
Hongeojjim (Steamed skate)
1 skate wing (about 450 grams)
1 scallion, finely chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon ginger
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine (or mirin)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 tablespoon sugar (or 1 tablespoon corn syrup or oligodang)
1/2 teaspoon gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes)
1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 scallion, cut into about 10 centimeter lengths and thinly sliced (pachae)
Clean the skate and lightly season with salt.
Combine the sauce ingredients, and mix well until the sugar is dissolved.
Fill a large pot with about two inches of water. Place a steamer on top. If no steamer is available, place a small heat proof baking dish or ramekin that can keep a large plate high enough not to touch the water, and then place a heat proof large plate on top. When the water starts to steam, add the fish and cover. Steam for about 8 to 10 minutes.
Open the lid, and spoon the sauce all over the fish. Cover, and steam for 2 to 3 more minutes. It’s done if the flesh separates from the cartilage easily. Remove from the pot and place the optional scallion while the fish is still hot.