Cooking en papillote is easy, fast, and requires minimal clean up (Hurray!) Not to mention, the fish is delicious and healthy cause its been steamed by it’s own juices rather than cooking in oil or whatever else.
It doesn’t need much to be yummy: A few herbs, lemon, a 1-2 tablespoons of good olive oil does the trick. (I also like to throw in cherry tomatoes for color, if they’re available!) You can also grab some fresh greens at the market (like spinach) and use them as a bed for the fish. For the fish pictured here, I went to 3 farmers market stalls and purposefully picked out greens I had never tasted or cooked with before to test my theory: Cooking en papillote makes everything delicious. I was right! But really, the herbs, lemon, and olive oil are just as yummy and looks equally impressive. What flavor combos did you come up with? Let me know!
WHOLE FISHEN PAPILLOTE
FRESH WHOLE FISH from the market (gutted and scaled) FRESH HERBS (parsley, basil, thyme)
1 LEMON PER FISH
OPTIONAL: CHERRY TOMATOES, LEAFY GREENS (LIKE SPINACH OR CHICORY), SPRING ONIONS
- Heat oven too 400 degrees F.
- Stuff fish with herbs and 1-2 cloves of garlic
- Slice lemon
- Cut a large piece of parchment paper, 2x the length of your fish.
- Fold parchment in half and then open it.
- On one side of parchment fold crease, place a layer of lemon slices, then your fish, then another layer of lemon slices
(If you have leafy greens/spring onions, put them on after the lemons and underneath the fish as a “bed”)
- Scatter cherry tomatoes over the top
- Drizzle olive oil all over the fish
- Fold other half of parchment over the fish and fold paper to close tight.
(You can do it like this or, if you’re like me, you can also just staple the paper together)
- Put the parchment envelope in a baking dish and put in oven.
- Cook for 20-25 minutes
Note: A TRICK TO TELLING IF YOUR FISH IS COOKED is to put a toothpick in the fish and then quickly press it to your lips. Is it warm? Fish is done! Still cold? Keep it in the oven a few more minutes.
- When time is up, cut open parchment and use a spoon and fork to split the fish completely in half; Pull out the bones; Scoop out the fish meat with a spoon and serve.
- Drizzle with olive oil and salt to taste.