Yesterday Lisa showed us an easy, full meal cooked on one baking sheet. Want another meal you can pull off with little fuss and hardly any cleanup? Cooking “en papillote”, or in wrapped packets, is healthy and fairly foolproof.
The method behind cooking en papillote is to put some or all of the components of a meal into a wrapped packet of some sort — pastry dough, banana or bamboo leaves, aluminium foil, wax paper, or whatever you’ve got that’s oven-safe. Moisture-rich food will steam itself in healthy fashion, but end up infused with other ingredients you toss in.
Serious Eats has a slideshow that provides some good ideas for packet cooking with meats, vegetables, and making flavoured garlic through the process. Personally, I’ve turned to Mark Bittman (not a real surprise, long-time readers will know) and his Red Snapper and Other Fillets in Packages recipe whenever I need to Iron Chef a dinner on the cheap or out of stray refrigerator veggies. I don’t use overfished red snapper, though — I buy some real cheap catfish, and end up with a meal that includes potatoes, basil/tomato/garlic-infused fish and impressed eaters.
We do, as always, welcome your own simple-but-delicious meal ideas in the comments.
How to Cook En Papillote [Serious Eats]