With just 20 minutes and one sheet pan you’ll have this Lemon Pepper Flounder with Asparagus and Tomatoes on the table. Simple seasoning and fresh lemon juice creates a light, flavorful meal you’ll want again and again.
If I tell you how long this recipe has been on my “to make” list, then you’d be shaking your head in exasperation. Especially once you taste it and realize that, yes, I’ve been holding out on you. So I just won’t divulge that snippet of information.
Maybe I’ll save that for a life update.
For now, I’m thinking about dinner and all things salt, fat, acid, and heat. Aka the basic elements of good cooking and the title of the most fantastic book I’ve been devouring lately. I’m thoroughly obsessed. My time in the kitchen has already become more mindful as I incorporate lessons from its pages, helping me create this light Lemon Pepper Flounder with citrusy asparagus and juicy oven-burst tomatoes.
I thought it couldn’t get better than this, until my friend pointed me toward this news update. Thank God I’m not in school anymore because homework stands no chance against this.
Are you getting my mental nudges to go read the book? I tried renewing my copy from the library but couldn’t. To the person who put it on hold— I applaud your taste, but wish you wouldn’t take the book from me.
Anyway, this is the first time I’ve made flounder. Originally I planned to use tilapia, since it’s also a fairly non-fishy fish, except we already had some flounder on hand, so… Figured it’s better to use it than to flounder around for something else to make for dinner. (Not even a little bit sorry for that pun. You had to see it coming.)
Because it’s thin you really only need a quick bout in the oven for your fish to be cooked, making dinner ready in just about 20 minutes. You can vent some steam after a long day at work as you break the ends off the asparagus spears. Then, toss them together with the bright red tomatoes, olive oil, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Add the fish to the same pan, drizzle a bit more oil and S&P on top. Squeeze lemon juice over it all and finish it off with some artfully placed lemon slices to let the citrus flavor seep into the flounder more while cooking.
I promise, by the time you finish setting the table your timer will beep and you’ll pull out a pan of perfectly flaky fish. The fresh lemon gives it a light flavor, while the acid also helps soften the tough asparagus. And when you bite into that tomato flesh, you’ll see how well its juicy sweetness plays off the lemony tartness.
Maybe you’re reading this on your way to work or taking a lunch break at your desk. Maybe, like me, you’re growing hungry as you imagine the burst of flavors, impatiently watching the clock tick tock along until the end of your day.
I’m right there with you, bud.
If you try this recipe, I’d love your feedback. Leave a comment below, save it on Pinterest, or tag #lensesandlentils on Instagram so that I can see your creations!
- 2 skinless flounder fillets
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 10 oz grape tomatoes
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp olive oil, divided
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line a baking sheet with tin foil.
- Break off the bottoms of the asparagus spears, about an inch of the way up. They should break easily.
- Toss the asparagus and tomatoes with 1 tablespoon of the oil, the salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Lay out in a single layer around the edges of the prepared baking sheet.
- Next, place your flounder in the center of the vegetables. Drizzle with the remaining oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Squeeze the juice from half the lemon over everything.
- Slice the other half of the lemon into thin slices. Then, place them on top of the flounder.
- Cook for 10-12 minutes, until the tomatoes are burst, the asparagus is lightly browned, and the fish is flaky.