Mediterranean Style Baked Fish en Papillote

“En Papillote” is French for “in parchment” and thus, baked fish en papillote means to literally bake fish in parchment paper. I’ve seen this done several times in recipes/cooking shows but I haven’t been a big fan of any of the recipes, so I used the method but designed by own recipe. I used tilapia because it is a mild, easy to cook fish. I cook fish a lot – this could be the most tender and flavorful, best fish recipe I’ve tried.  Plus, clean-up is lovely because you have no pots and pans! As an added bonus, this recipe is super healthy – chock full of vegetables, high protein and low fat fish, and because the fish cooks in the juices of the lemon and vegetables, you need absolutely no butter. So … it’s easy to make, easy to clean up, and easy on the calories. As a side note, I’ve heard of people cooking with foil but I would caution using acidic ingredients as it can react with the foil. If possible, stick with the parchment. Also, feel free to adjust this recipe to fit your tastes – you can use all kinds of vegetables and herbs/spices.

  • 2 fillets tilapia or other mild white fish
  • 1/2 large red pepper
  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • capers/Kalamata olives
  • 1/2 lemon
  • handful cherry tomatoes
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Olive oil
  • S/P
  • Parchment paper
  • Optional: brown rice and sauteed spinach for sides.

Slice and prepare your ingredients. Rinse the fish in cold water & pat dry. Preheat oven to 400.

Cut parchment into two 15×15 squares. Place one fillet in the center of the paper and season with red pepper flakes and S/P.

Next, cover the fish with half of the ingredients. Lay the lemon slices on top and splash some olive oil on top.

Repeat the process with the next piece of fish.

Carefully wrap up your parchment packet – I started at the top and held the top so it looked like the top of a tent, then I started scrunching down tightly and finished by scrunching the ends. You want a tight seal so the steam doesn’t escape. Lastly, brush a light coat of oil over the paper so it doesn’t burn. Bake at 400 for about 15 minutes. The paper will puff up toward the end.

Unwrap and you’ll have perfectly cooked and tender fish! I served the fish with rice and sauteed spinach. You can eat all of the bag’s contents (discard the lemon).

Time: ~ 35 minutes total

Serves: 2

Recipe Source: Original


3 thoughts on “Mediterranean Style Baked Fish en Papillote

  1. Ed Schenk February 10, 2010 / 1:33 PM

    I used to prepare cod in much the same way except I added fresh basil and feta cheese.

    • thequickanddirtycook February 10, 2010 / 10:15 PM

      Oh, that sounds like a great combination! I’ll have to try that next. Thanks!

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