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Fish in Parchment with Dill and Fennel Recipe

User Rating 4.5 Star Rating (3 Reviews)


Fish in Parchment with Dill and Fennel Recipe
Jen Hoy
This steamed fish entrée melds the mild anise flavor of fennel with lemon, shallots and dill. Fennel sweetens as it cooks, losing its intensity, and is good for the lungs and for digestion.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 fennel bulb, (about 1 pound), cut in half and sliced thin lengthwise
  • 2 shallots, sliced thin
  • ½ cup finely chopped fresh dill
  • 4 5-6 ounce filets of sole, tilapia, snapper or bass
  • Sea Salt


Preheat oven to 400’.

Combine lemon juice and olive oil in a small bowl. Set aside.

Mix fennel and shallots together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Fold 4 (12 by 14”) pieces of parchment paper in half to form 7x 12” rectangles and cut them into half-heart shapes as large as the paper allows. Unfold into hearts.

On one half of each piece, arrange a quarter of the fennel and shallot mixture 2 to 3 inches from the fold. Sprinkle half of the chopped dill (about one tablespoon on each) on top. Place one piece of fish over the fennel, and sprinkle with salt. Spoon the lemon mixture over the filets and sprinkle with remaining chopped dill.

Fold parchment over fillets and crimp edges to close. See "How to Make a Parchment Packet," (below) or the step-by-step tutorial How To Steam Fish in Parchment.

Place packets on a baking sheet and bake 15 minutes, until the packets have puffed up. The fish should be opaque and flake easily in the center. If it is not fully cooked, bake an additional 3-5 minutes. Serve immediately.

How to Make a Parchment Packet: Cooking in parchment starts with the shape of the paper. Fold a piece of 12x14” parchment paper in half and cut it into a half-heart shape, staying as close to the outside edges as possible. Open the heart, and place ingredients to one side of the fold line, at least 2 inches from the paper’s edge. Fold the top half over to enclose. Starting at the top of the heart fold about ½” of the edge toward the center and start rolling this "hem" around the edge, pinching the roll as you seal it. When the roll reaches the bottom tip of the heart, twist the bottom inch or two to seal.

Serves 4

Copyright 2008 by Jen Hoy
User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
Delicious Way to Eat More Fish, Member TaiChiTigress

I had never cooked with fennel and was looking for a recipe to try it out. This one sounded good and it didn't let me down. The fish was moist and very tasty. All the flavors melded, each one complementing the others. I used whiting, so I think any mild fish will work. The dill is definitely necessary to give that extra dimension of flavor. The parchment pouches were easy to do and made clean up very easy..no mess! We all loved this dish, so I will be making it again soon.

1 out of 1 people found this helpful.

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