Nathaniel Burton's Stuffed Flounder

Prep Time: 1 Hour

Yields: 6 Servings


Master Chef Nathaniel Burton, co-author of Creole Feast, was born in McComb, Miss. in 1914. Starting as a busboy at the Hotel New Orleans, he worked his way up to be one of the most respected Creole chefs in the city. He is best known for heading the kitchen of the famous Pontchartrain Hotel on St. Charles Avenue as well as Broussard's in the French Quarter. In addition to teaching many young chefs the art of Creole cooking in his kitchen, he shared his experiences with students at the Culinary Institute of America and Cornell University.


6 (1-pound) flounder

salt and black pepper to taste

granulated garlic to taste

¾ cup melted butter, divided

1 cup minced onions

1 cup minced celery

½ cup minced red bell peppers

½ cup minced green bell peppers

¼ cup minced garlic

1 cup (70–90 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 cup white wine, divided

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 cup shellfish stock

1 pound lump crabmeat

2 cups seasoned Italian bread crumbs

½ cup water


Preheat oven to 375°F. Have your seafood supplier thoroughly clean, scale and remove heads from 6 flounder. Using a sharp paring knife, cut a slit down center of dark side of flounder from head to tail. Following rib bone, cut a pocket down each side of fish. Season flounder well inside and out with salt, pepper and granulated garlic then set aside. In a large sauté pan, heat ¼ cup butter over medium-high heat. Add onions, celery, bell peppers and minced garlic and sauté 3–5 minutes or until vegetables are wilted, stirring occasionally. Add shrimp and cook 5–7 minutes or until pink and curled. Deglaze with ½ cup of wine and reduce to half volume. Pour in cream and stock, bring to a rolling boil then reduce to simmer. Cook until sauce is reduced by half. Gently fold in crabmeat then season to taste with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Sprinkle in just enough bread crumbs, 1 cup at a time, to absorb liquid and hold mixture together, mixing until a stuffing consistency is achieved. Remove from heat and adjust seasonings if necessary. Place flounder on a large cookie sheet with 1-inch lip and divide stuffing evenly among fish. Stuff each slit generously. If desired, add a slice of lemon and a dash of paprika on top of stuffing in each pocket. Add remaining wine, melted butter and ½ cup water to bottom of cookie sheet and bake 25–30 minutes or until fish flakes easily and stuffing is heated through. Serve immediately.