By Mayo Clinic Staff

Dietitian's tip:

It's easy and delicious to cook fish fillets in packets of parchment paper, a technique called en papillote (pronounced en pap-e-YOTE). If you don't have parchment paper on hand, use aluminum foil.

Number of servings

Serves 4


  1. 1/4 cup almonds
  2. 4 sea bass or halibut fillets, each 5 ounces and about 1-inch thick
  3. 1 small tomato, diced
  4. 1/4 cup minced yellow onion
  5. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  6. 4 teaspoons dry white wine
  7. 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
  8. 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  9. 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, steeped in 2 tablespoons hot water
  10. 1/2 teaspoon each salt and freshly ground white pepper


Put the almonds in a food processor and process to the consistency of fine bread crumbs. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Cut 4 15-inch squares of parchment (baking) paper. Fold 1 square in half to create a crease, then open up. Place 1 fillet next to the crease. Repeat with the remaining squares and fillets.

Top each fillet with 1/4 of the tomato, onion, almond meal, olive oil, wine, parsley, thyme, saffron, and salt and white pepper. Working with 1 square, fold the paper over the fish and vegetables, then fold the edges several times, crimping to seal the packet completely. Repeat to make 3 more packets. Place the packets on a baking sheet.

Bake until the paper is starting to brown, about 15 minutes. (If the fillets are thin, bake for 12 minutes.) Place the packets on plates. To serve, slit an X in each packet and fold open.

Nutritional analysis per serving

Serving size :1 fillet

  • Total carbohydrate 4 g
  • Dietary fiber 2 g
  • Sodium 390 mg
  • Saturated fat 2 g
  • Total fat 11 g
  • Trans fat 0 g
  • Cholesterol 58 mg
  • Protein 28 g
  • Monounsaturated fat 6 g
  • Calories 227
  • Sugars 0 g

This recipe is one of 150 recipes collected in "The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook," published by Mayo Clinic Health Information and Oxmoor House, and winner of the 2005 James Beard award.

Nov. 30, 2012