How to Make Cod en Papillote with Herb Butter

Borrowing the French technique of cooking in parchment, this recipe for herb-buttered cod en papillote will revolutionize the way you prepare fish.

Borrowing the popular French technique of cooking in parchment, this “en papillote” recipe pairs cod with lemon, herbs, and asparagus, roasting everything together inside of a sealed parcel. This method creates concentrated steam for an incredibly fragrant, flavor-infused fish dish. Plus, serving is a cinch—just tear the parchment pockets and transfer to a plate.

If you’re having trouble keeping your parchment closed as you seal your parcel, beat an egg white and brush on a little bit to help the sides adhere. If that’s not available, just fold as tightly as you can; a less-than-airtight seal will work just fine, too.

12 ounces pacific cod
1 lemon, divided
⅙ bunch parsley
⅙ bunch chives
6 ounces pencil asparagus
1 cup farro and red rice
2 packets butter
2 tablespoons white wine
1 piece parchment paper

medium pot
2 baking sheets
2 tablespoons olive oil
black pepper
kosher salt


1. Prepare Ingredients
Preheat oven to 425°F. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Rinse cod and pat dry with paper towel. Zest lemon, then halve. Thinly slice ½. Rinse parsley and finely chop leaves, discarding stems. Rinse chives and thinly slice. Rinse asparagus and trim and discard woody bottoms. Cut on a diagonal into 1-inch pieces.

2. Cook Farro and Rice
Add farro and rice and a generous pinch salt to pot of boiling water and cook until tender, 22-25 minutes. Drain and transfer to a medium bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

3. Assemble Papillotes
While farro and rice cook, in a small bowl, mash together butter, parsley, chives, and ½ of lemon zest to make herb butter. Cut parchment in half. Fold each piece in half lengthwise to create a crease, then reopen and lay on a clean dry surface. Place cod on one side of each. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle over white wine. Dot herb butter evenly over cod, then top with sliced lemon.

4. Roast Papillotes
Dot herb butter evenly over cod, then top with sliced lemon. Fold over parchment, recreasing, then fold in edges, overlapping and tucking all around, to create a tightly sealed parcel. Place papillotes on a baking sheet. Roast until parchment is puffed and cod is opaque, 12 minutes.

5. Roast Asparagus
While papillotes roast, on a separate baking sheet, toss asparagus with remaining lemon zest, juice of remaining ½ lemon, 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt, and pepper. Arrange in a single layer and roast until tender and crisping, about 8 minutes.

6. Plate Papillotes
Stir asparagus into farro and rice. Divide evenly between 2 plates. Tear open papillotes and serve alongside.

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in Nourish


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