Recipes.

Paper-Baked Sea Bream With Mushrooms

By Emiko Davies


I Quit Sugar - Sea Bream
  • 4 servings
  • Prep - 20 mins
    Cooking - 25 mins
  • Total - 45 mins
I Quit Sugar - Sea Bream

If you've been looking for a way to jazz up your kitchen repertoire, try this paper-baked fish! This recipe is baked al cartoccio, as the Italian say, or en papillotte, as the French say! The wrapped up fish cooks in steaming and aromatic juices, providing a moist and flavourful dish.  

Servings: 4
Preparation: 20 mins
Cooking: 25 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 medium gilthead sea bream, scaled and cleaned.
  • 2 handfuls fresh herbs such as thyme, basil, oregano, calamint, mint, flat-leaf parsley and rosemary.
  • 2 lemons, 1 sliced, 1 juiced.
  • 80 ml extra-virgin olive oil.
  • 2 garlic cloved, sliced.
  • 400 g mushrooms, cleaned and sliced.

Directions

1. Make sure the fish have been scaled and cleaned, and remove the fins with kitchen scissors; rinse and pat dry. Cut 3 slashes about 1.5 cm (½ in) deep along the fleshiest part of the fish, on both sides. Season with salt and pepper, rubbing it into the slices and skin. Sprinkle salt in the belly cavities, then stuff with about two-thirds of the herbs and a few slices of lemon to fill. Set aside in the fridge until needed. Pick the leaves from the remaining herbs. Heat half the olive oil in a frying pan and cook the garlic over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and the rest of the herbs and cook in the oil until golden and softened, about 5–6 minutes. Allow them to cool.

2. Heat the oven to 200°C (400°F).

3. Tear a large sheet of baking paper for each fish, about double the length of the fish, and distribute the mushrooms in the middle. Place the fish on top of the mushrooms, then pour over the lemon juice and drizzle with the rest of the olive oil.

4. Wrap the fish in the paper, bring together the long edges of the paper, folding them down together so they overlap slightly. The short sides can be folded at the fish’s tail and head, towards the middle of the fish and secured with a piece of kitchen string, like a present.

5. Bake for about 20–25 minutes. Remove the fish from the oven and let it sit, wrapped, for 5 minutes before serving. If using a different-sized fish, you may need to double-check if the fish is cooked properly. To check, unwrap the paper carefully (escaping steam is hot). Take a knife and see if the skin and flesh easily lifts off near the spine. Also look at the gashes, they should reveal opaque, soft meat. If not, wrap it back up and put it back in the oven to check in 5 minute increments.

6. To serve, you can transfer the whole fish to a long oval plate, dribbling the juices and mushrooms over the top. But I prefer to place it right on the plate, as it is, still sitting in its paper.


Note

This is an edited extract from Acquacotta by Emiko Davies published by Hardie Grant Books RRP $49.99 and is available in stores nationally.

Acquacotta CVR

If you've been looking for a way to jazz up your kitchen repertoire, try this paper-baked fish! This recipe is baked al cartoccio, as the Italian say, or en papillotte, as the French say! The wrapped up fish cooks in steaming and aromatic juices, providing a moist and flavourful dish.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium gilthead sea bream, scaled and cleaned.
  • 2 handfuls fresh herbs such as thyme, basil, oregano, calamint, mint, flat-leaf parsley and rosemary.
  • 2 lemons, 1 sliced, 1 juiced.
  • 80 ml extra-virgin olive oil.
  • 2 garlic cloved, sliced.
  • 400 g mushrooms, cleaned and sliced.

Directions

1. Make sure the fish have been scaled and cleaned, and remove the fins with kitchen scissors; rinse and pat dry. Cut 3 slashes about 1.5 cm (½ in) deep along the fleshiest part of the fish, on both sides. Season with salt and pepper, rubbing it into the slices and skin. Sprinkle salt in the belly cavities, then stuff with about two-thirds of the herbs and a few slices of lemon to fill. Set aside in the fridge until needed. Pick the leaves from the remaining herbs. Heat half the olive oil in a frying pan and cook the garlic over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and the rest of the herbs and cook in the oil until golden and softened, about 5–6 minutes. Allow them to cool.

2. Heat the oven to 200°C (400°F).

3. Tear a large sheet of baking paper for each fish, about double the length of the fish, and distribute the mushrooms in the middle. Place the fish on top of the mushrooms, then pour over the lemon juice and drizzle with the rest of the olive oil.

4. Wrap the fish in the paper, bring together the long edges of the paper, folding them down together so they overlap slightly. The short sides can be folded at the fish’s tail and head, towards the middle of the fish and secured with a piece of kitchen string, like a present.

5. Bake for about 20–25 minutes. Remove the fish from the oven and let it sit, wrapped, for 5 minutes before serving. If using a different-sized fish, you may need to double-check if the fish is cooked properly. To check, unwrap the paper carefully (escaping steam is hot). Take a knife and see if the skin and flesh easily lifts off near the spine. Also look at the gashes, they should reveal opaque, soft meat. If not, wrap it back up and put it back in the oven to check in 5 minute increments.

6. To serve, you can transfer the whole fish to a long oval plate, dribbling the juices and mushrooms over the top. But I prefer to place it right on the plate, as it is, still sitting in its paper.

Note

This is an edited extract from Acquacotta by Emiko Davies published by Hardie Grant Books RRP $49.99 and is available in stores nationally.

Acquacotta CVR

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