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  • Writer's pictureTarah Cantrell

Steamed Fish With Drawn Butter

You won't be disappointed when you make this steamed fish dish, whether it's done using sheep's head fish, cod, or your own favorite fish filet. What's YOUR favorite way to prepare fish? Let me know in the comments below! Get ready for a much more streamlined rendition of this long-forgotten recipe from the late Victorian era, updated by yours truly.

This has to be one of the easiest dishes I've ever attempted on the channel, but boy was the name a weird one until I did a little research. To make a long story short, I changed the name so that if a relative asks, you can call it 'steamed fish' instead and go on with your day knowing that no one threw up after hearing what the dish was originally called. I hope you enjoy this delicious fish as much as we did!

Good Old Fashioned Steamed Fish With Parsley Butter

Yield: approx. 4 servings

Active Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes depending on size of fish filets


2 large or 4 small fish filets (any descaled fish will work but I used cod)

salt and pepper, to taste

water, for steaming

1/2 cup or 4 ounces butter

1 tablespoon flour

2-4 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 lemon, cut into wedges, for serving

more fresh parsley, for serving



aluminum foil

steaming pot or steaming basket



medium pot

whisk or heat-safe fork

serving spoon

plate or serving tray

chopping board

chopping knife or chef's knife


Part 1: Steam the Fish

  1. In the steamer pot, add just over 1 inch of water.

  2. Bring water to a boil.

  3. For each piece of fish, prepare 1 piece of parchment and 1 piece of aluminum foil.

  4. Lightly salt and pepper each piece of fish on both sides, to taste.

  5. Wrap fish in parchment then aluminum foil. Be careful to wrap foil tightly enough that water will not be able to escape through.

  6. Place each fish parcel into the steamer basket, stacking fish with plenty of space for steam to escape between the parcels.

  7. Place the steamer basket into the boiling water pot, lid on.

  8. Steam fish for approximately 20-25 minutes or until fish is flaky. Add boiling water to steamer as needed, being careful not to touch fish parcels with the water.

Part 2: Make the Sauce

  1. Place butter and flour in sauce pan and mix over medium heat until butter is fully melted and creamed with the flour using a whisk or fork.

  2. Add lemon juice until there is enough to create a sauce-like consistency.

  3. Whisk until lemon juice is fully incorporated into butter mixture.

  4. Add parsley.

  5. Continue whisking until sauce forms and bubbles.

  6. Remove from heat as soon as the sauce passes the spoon test.

Part 3: Put Them Together

  1. When the fish is steamed, remove it from the parchment and place onto serving tray.

  2. Spoon sauce over the fish.

  3. Garnish with lemon wedges and fresh parsley.

  4. Serve this dish with a fresh lemon wedge and more fresh parsley. Yum!

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