Cod in Parchment w/ Broccolini, Potatoes & Leeks

When I was a teenybopper, I spent 2 weeks a summer for 3 years at a sleepaway camp in Bass Lake, California. We hiked through pine tree covered hills, repelled down mountains, and water-skied daily across the lake. We saw wild bald eagles in the morning, had mud fights at dusk, and slept under the stars.

cod ingredients

It was there I cooked my first campfire foil dinner.  I remember it being so special- an event that everyone looked forward to- because it only happened once each session when our group would go on an overnight retreat.

cod potatoes
 cod w/ broccolini
cod with leeks

Those 6 weeks were undoubtedly some of my best adolescent memories...and to this day, it isn’t an Oreo or Happy Meal that brings out my childhood nostalgia, it’s wrapping my food in foil.

cod in parch

INGREDIENTS: (serves 2)

  • 2, 4 oz. filets of Codtip1
  • 1 bunch broccolini
  • 2 small leeks, thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 small Yukon gold potato, sliced into ¼” pieces
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • kosher salt & pepper to taste

To prepare potatoes:

-Preheat oven to 400° F.
-Using a mandolintip2 or knife, slice the potato into ¼” pieces.tip3
-Lightly coat with ½ tbsp. of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
-Place on sheet tray and roast for 20 minutes.
-Remove and reserve.

To prepare broccolini:

-Bring a large saucepan of heavily salted water to a rolling boil.
-Set up an ice water bath.
-Cut off ends of broccolini and remove excess leaves.
-Boil for 30 seconds and immediately place in ice water bath to stop the cooking process.
-Pat dry and cut into 1” pieces.

To prepare leeks:

-Using the white part of the leek only, cut lengthwise. Place the flat, inner part on the cutting board and thinly slice (about 1/8” thick).
-In a small sauté pan on medium-high, heat 1 ½ tbsp. of olive oil and add the leeks.
-Lightly season with salt and pepper and sweat for a minute, until edges are golden.
-Remove and reserve.

To finish:

-Cut two pieces of parchment paper and aluminum foil into rectangles (mine were 15”x9”).tip4
-Divide ingredients in half.
-Making two separate envelopes, place each piece of parchment on the foil and create a bed with the potatoes.
-Stack the broccolini and then the cod.
-Lightly season with salt and pepper.
-Top cod with the sautéed leeks and drizzle 1 tbsp. of lemon juice on each fish.
-Fold parchment in thirds over fishtip5 then fold foil over to completely seal, leaving no openings.tip6
-Bake at 400° F for 20 minutes.

My tips:

1.  I used cod because it was the seafood shop’s freshest delivery- any flaky white fish will do.
2.  A mandolin allows for even slicing.  If you use a knife, be careful since the potato will be wobbly!
3.  Pre-roasting the potatoes ensures that they won’t be raw when the fish is ready.  Alternatively, you can use very thin slices of potatoes to avoid pre-cooking.
4.  The parchment and foil should be large enough to stack all ingredients and create an “envelope”.
5.  Use the parchment as a barrier between the ingredients and foil.  This prevents the food from taking on a metallic taste.
6.  Sealing each packet tightly allows the fish to steam itself and helps lock in flavors.