Cooking fish en papillote (French), or con cartocchio (Italian), is an easy way to put a a healthy dish on the table for dinner and have a little bit of flair. If you have ever steamed vegetables on a grill in a foil pouch, this is the same technique and now you have a fancy name for it. If you are watching what you eat, you can easily control the calorie total for this dish as a 5oz piece of white fish will clock in around 250 Calories and half a cup each of zucchini and yellow squash only totals 40 Calories between the two. With the teaspoon of oil and half a glass of white wine, you are only getting 400 Calories if you manage to sop up all of the liquid.
By sealing the fish, and vegetables, in a tight pouch you can steam the fish gently with a flavorful liquid keeping it moist and protecting yourself against overcooking the fish on the stove. What follows is a basic recipe, but you can substitute a lot of ingredients based on what you have or you like – any fresh herbs go well instead of just parsley; mix your citrus up adding oranges or grapefruit to the lemon; use different liquids like stock instead of just wine; switch out the olive oil for butter; use fennel instead of squash. The possibilities are endless.
Cod en Papillote
- 5oz Filet or loin piece of cod or other white fish
- 1/2 Cup Julienne or shredded zucchini
- 1/2 Cup Julienne or shredded yellow squash
- 1 Sliced Lemon
- 1 Garlic Clove
- 1 Sprig of Parsley or other herbs
- 1 teaspoon of olive oil
- 1/2 Glass (2.5oz) of White Wine
- Preheat your oven to 400 Degrees Fahrenheit
- Shred or julienne your vegetables and slice your lemon into rounds.
- Tear off a square of parchment paper or aluminum foil.
- Lay the lemons down first, then the shredded or julienned vegetables
- Place the fish on top of the vegetables with the garlic and parsley. Season with a little salt and pepper.
- Fold the paper or foil up and tightly crimp and fold one end so it looks like a burrito
- Pour the oil and wine into the packet and then fold the remaining side closed and seal it tightly.
- Bake in the over for approximately 12 minutes. You’ll tell that the fish is done as the paper browns and the pouch has puffed up.
- Remove the pouch from the oven to a plate and either open or cut open the pouch. Steam is going to billow out, so be careful.
What are your go-to light summer dinners?