Fish in Parchment with Dill and Fennel Recipe

salmon-fennel-in-parchment-cThis 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

Ingredients:
• 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

Preparation:
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.
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 12×14” 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.

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