This type of cooking is one of my favorites as the food cooks in its own juices.  Cooking in packets (en papillote) basically means steaming small portions of food in a wrapper in a hot oven.  You can use parchment paper or tin foil – I’ve used both.  Click here to see how to make a heart-shaped packet out of parchment paper.   This presentation method is guaranteed to have your friends or family wonder what’s in the packet and when they cut into it, aromatic steam fills the air.  It’s a healthy way to eat as the method requires little or no additional fat.   If you like this then you may also want to try: Sea Bass en Papillote with Tangerine and Grapefruit or Grouper en Papillote or Baked Salmon Parcels.

Serves 4
adapted from Fine Cooking

1-1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1-1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon hot chili sesame oil
1 teaspoon honey
1-1/2 lb. jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 small cloves garlic, minced
baby bok choy, washed and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices (about 3 cups)
Peanut or vegetable oil for brushing the packets
2 scallions (white and light-green parts only), thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro/coriander

Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and heat to 190c ( 375f).

To prepare the packets, tear off four sheets of tin foil (about 20-inches long). Fold each sheet in half and fold up the sides to make a pouch – leave the top open.  In a small bowl, stir the soy sauce, vinegar, hoisin sauce, lime juice, hot chili oil, and honey. In another bowl, combine the shrimp, ginger, and garlic. Pour about half of the soy mixture over the shrimp and toss to coat. In another bowl, combine the bok choy, scallions, and cilantro. Add the remaining soy mixture to the bowl and toss to coat. Distribute the bok choy among the packets and pour over any liquid remaining in the bowl.  Arrange the shrimp on top of the bok choy.  Fold the top of the packet over a couple of times to seal it.

Transfer the packets to two baking sheets and bake for 8 minutes. Rotate and swap the baking sheets’ positions and continue to bake until the packets are puffed and fragrant, about 7 minutes more. Serve immediately.

The Culinary Chase’s Note:   So easy to prepare and fun to open.  Serve this with rice or noodles.  Enjoy!