Monkfish and Shrimp Skewers Recipe | Wine Enthusiast
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Monkfish and Shrimp Skewers Recipe

Courtesy Cristina Ibañez, chef, San Sebastián Food

Cristina Ibañez was raised in a traditional Basque kitchen. When not cooking for San Sebastián’s aristocracy, Ibañez’s amona (grandmother) taught her the cornerstones of local cuisine, from assembling pintxos (small snacks generally served on toothpicks) to preserving their own bonito fish.

San Sebastián is considered Spain’s premier food city, and Ibañez’s classes at San Sebastián Food’s new cooking school in the five-star Hotel Maria Cristina are not to be missed. She might teach participants how to build a gilda (a pintxo made with a pickled Gernika pepper, a slice of anchovy and an olive) or make her award-winning marmitako (tuna soup).

With Ibañez, it’s not all Basque, all the time. She also makes a mean paella, big or small. And by big, we mean one capable of feeding more than 250 people. When not teaching Basque cuisine, you can find Ibañez styling film sets or digging into a plate of barnacle-like creatures called percebes, her favorite dish.


4 wooden skewers
1 pound monkfish, cut into cubes
12 shrimp, peeled and cleaned
4 slices bacon, cut into quarters
1½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, sliced thin
½ dried red chili
Fresh parsley, chopped


Place monkfish, shrimp and bacon on skewers, alternating each.

Add 1 tablespoon of oil to pan. Heat to medium-high. Sauté skewers 2 minutes per side, until fish and shrimp are golden brown. Remove from pan. Add remaining oil to pan. Sauté garlic and dried chili until garlic turns golden.

Spoon garlic/chili-infused oil evenly over each skewer. Garnish with parsley. Serves 4.

Pair It

For this popular Basque pintxo, go with a barrel-fermented Viura, the principal white grape of nearby Rioja. Top producers include Marqués de Murrieta, Beronia, Muga, R. López de Heredia and Remírez de Ganuza.