Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Cod Baked in Foil with Leeks & Carrots

Are you looking for an incredible fish recipe? This is a restaurant quality recipe in taste and appearance. When I first found this recipe during a recent online search, I questioned whether my kids would eat and enjoy it. After watching a short video on Cook's Illustrated demonstrating the cooking instructions, I was sold on how quick and easy it was to prepare. I tried it with a little apprehension, but one bite was all it took to convince any doubters.

My husband actually said that he would be sad if he didn't have the opportunity to eat this again in the very near future. The real kids asked for seconds and would have licked their plates clean if we let them. I think what transforms this recipe into something amazing is the sauce. One tablespoon of white wine is poured directly over the vegetables and another tablespoon or so of a butter-thyme-lemon zest mixture is poured over the fish. The two combine while cooking and makes a simple sauce covering the vegetables that is fresh and light and, well, simply divine.


4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 teaspoons grated zest from 1 lemon
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 medium leeks, white and green parts halved lengthwise, washed, and cut into matchsticks (about 2 cups)
4 tablespoons dry white wine
4 skinless cod fillets*, 1 to 1 1/4 inches thick (about 6 ounces each)

*Cod can be substituted with haddock, red snapper, halibut, sea bass, or tilapia as long as the fillets are 1 to 1 1/4 inches thick.


1. Combine butter, 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest, 1 teaspoon garlic, thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in small bowl; set aside. In another small bowl, combine parsley, remaining lemon zest, and remaining 1 teaspoon garlic; set aside.

2. Place carrots and leeks in medium bowl, season with salt and pepper, and toss together.

3. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Cut eight 12-inch sheets of foil; arrange four flat on counter. Divide carrot and leek mixture among foil sheets, mounding in center of each. Pour 1 tablespoon white wine over each mound of vegetables.

4. Pat fish dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper. Place one fillet on top of each vegetable mound.

5. Spread quarter of butter mixture on top of each fillet.

6. Place second sheet of foil on top of fish; crimp each edge together with a 1/2-inch fold. Fold each edge three more times to create an airtight packet, about 7-inches square. Place packets on rimmed baking sheet (overlapping slightly if necessary). The packets may be assembled several hours ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to cook.

7. Bake packets 15 minutes. If packets have been refrigerated more than 30 minutes, increase cooking time by 2 minutes. Carefully cut open center of foil, allowing steam to escape away from you. Open each packet promptly after baking to prevent overcooking.

8. Open foil to expose fish and vegetables. Using thin spatula, gently slide fish and vegetables onto plate with any accumulated juices.

9. Sprinkle with parsley mixture. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.

Recipe from Cook's Illustrated

Yields: 4 servings. Each serving contains: Calories 338; Total Fat 13.3g; Saturated Fat 7.6g; Cholesterol 124mg; Sodium 1126mg; Total Carbohydrates 11.1g; Dietary Fiber 2.1g; Sugars 3.9g; Protein 40.1g; Vitamin A 165%; Vitamin C 21%; Calcium 8%; Iron 13%

Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

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