ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Food and Cooking»
  • Culinary Arts & Cooking Techniques

6 Easy Steps To Cooking Shrimp and Vegetables En Papillote

Updated on August 13, 2012
alifeofdesign profile image

Graham is a former chef, and food stylist with a passion for all things food-related. She has also never been known to decline dessert.

Cast your vote for cooking in parchment

En papillote (French translation: "in parchment") is quite simply, a method of cooking in which food (most often fish or chicken) is placed within a folded pouch of parchment paper. This cooking technique locks in the foods' natural juices and any addition flavors, such as wine or fresh herbs, and allows no flavors to escape.

En papillote makes a lovely table side presentation. At many restaurants, the server will puncture the parchment with a quick jab of a fork and then gently tear the paper releasing the aromas.

From the cook's perspective, cooking in parchment is an easy way to prepare quick meals. If presentation is not your primary objective, you can certainly use a paper bag or aluminum foil. Both work equally as well.

Using this method of cooking can also be quite low in fat and calories. With the abundance of fresh vegetables, summer is a wonderful time to bake in parchment. One of my favorite recipes is a Champagne and orange lobster en papillote I found in one of my cooking magazines years ago.

But, cooking in parchment is also a wonderful way to warm up during the cold winter months. A simple and delicious dessert can be made by adding sliced apples, a little brown sugar, a pinch of butter and dash of cognac to a parchment envelope. Piping hot from the oven, the smell permeates the air. Once cooled, top with a scoop of cinnamon ice cream and winter is a little less gloomy.

I recently discovered the recipe (below) for pears baked in parchment with chocolate and vanilla. I have often poached pears, but I have yet to try preparing pears in parchment. The recipe appears to be very easy and I just love the presentaion.


Asian Shrimp and Vegetables en Papillote

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: Serves Two (serve with Jasmine rice)


  • 14 shrimp, tail on, deveined
  • 1 small red pepper, sliced thinly
  • 3 scallions, cut into two inch pieces
  • 1 carrot, julienne, or cut into thin strips by knife
  • 1 half zucchini, julienne, or cut into thin strips by knife
  • 1/4 cup sliced water chestnuts
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons tamari sauce
  1. Cut 2 parchment hearts and place on baking sheet
  2. Place 7 shrimp on each parchment. Put half of the red pepper, scallions, water chestnuts, carrot, zucchini, garlic, ginger and sesame seeds within each parchment.
  3. Drizzle 1 teaspoon of sesame oil over each small pile of food and using your fingers toss slightly.
  4. Drizzle 1 teaspoon of tamari over each serving (soy sauce works fine also).
  5. Sprinkle sesame seeds over each serving and tightly secure parchment edges.
  6. Place baking sheet into pre-heated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. Parchment will turn a light golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Tear into parchment, being careful of steam and serve with rice.

What's your favorite recipe for cooking in parchment?

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • alifeofdesign profile image

      Graham Gifford 5 years ago from New Hamphire

      Faith, the bags are very convenient, but just having parchment in your kitchen can help with so many cooking and baking situations. If anyone happens to be on a restrictive diet, this may be a good choice for baking. The flavor profile can be very, very nice without added fat or a great deal of salt.

      Thanks for visiting!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 5 years ago from southern USA

      I have never seen such. I have parchment paper, but didn't know about the bags. Thanks for this clever and healthy cooking method and for sharing the recipe. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • alifeofdesign profile image

      Graham Gifford 5 years ago from New Hamphire

      Hi nmdonders,

      This method is so very simple. I do hope you give it a try!

      Best Regards,

    • nmdonders profile image

      Nira Perkins 5 years ago

      I've never seen this method of cooking it's very interesting. I may have tried it before but I wouldn't know. It looks delicious.