Baked Fish with Parmesan Breadcrumbs

If you are preparing this in a kitchen without a food processor, you can substitute 2 cups of prepared breadcrumbs for the sandwich bread in this recipe. Use fresh, coarsely ground breadcrumbs if possible (avoid finely ground).

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Butter (for the baking dish)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 sprigs parsley
  • 3 slices (1/4-inch thick) white sandwich bread, cut or torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup (2 1/2 ounces) shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 pounds flounder fillets, or other mild fish
  • 1 to 2 lemons, cut into wedges (for garnish)

Method

1 Preheat the oven to 425°F. Butter a large (9- by 13-inch) baking dish.

2 Prepare the fish: Season the fish on both sides with salt and pepper. Lay them in the baking dish, overlapping them as necessary so the fillets all fit in the dish.

3 Make the breadcrumb topping: Strip the leaves from the stems of parsley and add them to a food processor. (Discard or save the stems for another purpose.) Pulse the leaves until well chopped.

Add the bread and pulse until it forms soft, coarse crumbs – you should have about 2 cups of coarse-ground breadcrumbs.  Add the Parmesan cheese, and pulse to mix. Add the melted butter, olive oil, salt and pepper and pulse until mixed.

(If using prepared breadcrumbs, just finely chop the parsley and toss with the breadcrumbs. You can also finely chop the Parmesan cheese, if you like, or just toss it with the breadcrumbs as is.)

4 Bake the fish: Spread the breadcrumbs evenly over the fish.

Transfer to the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the center of the fish is opaque when probed with a small knife and the breadcrumbs are golden. If you have an instant read thermometer, the temperature of the center of the fish should register 135F.

If the fish cooks before the topping browns, turn on the broiler and broil for about one minute. Watch carefully to keep the breadcrumbs from burning.

5 Serve the fish: With a sharp knife, cut the fish into portions. (You won’t be able to serve one single fillet by itself, since they overlap in the pan and cook into one another.) Transfer to plates and serve with lemon wedges.