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Test Kitchen tips: Cooking 'en papillote'

February 7, 2012 |  9:00 am


Looking for a wonderfully dramatic dinner idea without any dramatic fuss? You might just try cooking en papillote.

A traditional French technique, cooking en papillote refers to food that is cooked or baked while tightly sealed in greased parchment paper. The food typically cooks up in minutes, the sealed parchment literally puffing up as the food gently steams inside.

Serve the parchment packet tableside, breaking it open in front of the eager diner. It's wonderfully entertaining. And with no pots or pans to mess up in the kitchen, it's virtually stress-free. A perfect meal, whether you're cooking on a hectic weeknight, or are planning a special dinner for a certain someone.

Click below for a quick step-by-step on assembling the parchment paper and related recipe ideas.

If you have any kitchen tips or questions you'd like me to explore, leave a comment below or shoot me an email at noelle.carter@latimes.com.


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Photo credits: Myung Chun / Los Angeles Times.


1. Mound the ingredients and seasonings along one side of the center fold of the prepared parchment heart.


2. Fold the parchment over the food and crimp the edges to seal in juices and keep steam from escaping.


3. Bring the packets to the table and cut open the parchment with a sharp knife for a burst of aroma.

Food story about parchment paper with recipes for Summer fruit en papillote, Scallops niçoise en papillote and Shiitakes and corn en papillote