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Basic Lemon & Herb Fish en Papillote

Gary Junken

Servings: 4

Foods cooked “en papillote”—in a paper bag—emerge succulent and saturated with flavor. As they bake, the steam causes them to puff up and when you cut into them, you are rewarded with a cloud of aromatic steam-the perfect way to bring a little drama to the dinner table. Gremolata, a simple but delicious mixture of parsley, lemon zest, and garlic minced together, will work with anything from trout or sole fillets to mackerel or bluefish.


  • 3 Tbs. chopped parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs. minced lemon zest
  • 4 scallions (both white and green parts)
  • 1 to 1-1/2 lb. fish fillet, in four equal portions
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 3 Tbs. softened butter (optional)

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on trout
  • Calories (kcal) : 180
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 68
  • Fat (g): 8
  • Saturated Fat (g): 1
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 4
  • Cholesterol (mg): 65
  • Sodium (mg): 65
  • Carbohydrates (g): 3
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 24


  • Heat the oven to 450°F.
  • To make the gremolata, mince the parsley, garlic, and lemon zest together. Set aside.
  • Cut the scallions into 2-in. lengths and slice them lengthwise. Season the fish with salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and spread the top with butter, if desired.
  • Divide the scallions among four sheets of parchment, top each with a portion of fish, and top the fish with a portion of gremolata. Seal the packages and bake on a sheet pan until puffy and browned, about 8 min.


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Reviews (3 reviews)

  • JillLJ | 06/12/2019

    Love this recipe. Very flexible. I like to cook the fish over a vegetable like spinach so that the butter and lemon juice steams/bakes in.

  • UNC_cook | 11/19/2010

    This recipe was great with 3/4 inch 0.5 lbs sea bass fillets cooked for ~ 13 minutes. Combine this with a Caesar salad recipe from Fine Cooking and a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc for a perfect Friday night dinner.

  • rt1976 | 02/24/2008

    I did this with cod and the fish turned out very nicely - this is a great way to cook it. The gremolata didn't turn out as good, though - the lemon peel and garlic still tasted a little raw when the fish was cooked. Maybe if I do this again I'll cook the lemon and garlic down a little first.

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