Baked Flounder Oreganata with Bell Pepper and Feta Orzo

Baked Flounder Oreganata with Bell Pepper and Feta Orzo

Chef Giuseppe has enjoyed many plates of seafood oreganata, or fish baked with a crispy breadcrumb topping, with his Italian family over the years. This repeat recipe ranks among his favorite (and that’s saying a lot!). Here, he tops tender flounder fillets with oregano- and garlic-infused breadcrumbs and bakes until golden. The warm bell pepper and feta orzo adds a taste of the Mediterranean with tomatoes, olives, and lemon.



35 mins

Total cook time


Skill level

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Main Ingredients

  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 ounce dill
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 ounces Kalamata olives
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 1/4 pounds flounder
  • 2 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 38 grams unsalted butter
  • olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper

Cooking Instructions

Step 1

Preheat oven to 450°F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Rinse all produce. Halve bell pepper lengthwise, discarding seeds and stem; cut into .25-inch pieces. Halve tomatoes. Roughly chop dill leaves, discarding stems. Halve 1 lemon and set aside for Step 5; cut remaining lemon into wedges for serving. Roughly chop olives. Mince garlic.

Step 2

In a medium bowl, stir together breadcrumbs, dried oregano, half of garlic, 1.5 tablespoons olive oil, .25 teaspoon salt, and black pepper as desired. Set oreganata topping aside until Step 4.

Step 3

Season boiling water generously with salt. Stir in orzo and cook until al dente, about 12 minutes (though orzo is shaped like a grain, it's actually a pasta—the amount of water isn't indicated because you'll drain the orzo when it's finished cooking). Reserve .5 cup pasta cooking water, then drain and return to pot, off heat.

Step 4

While orzo cooks, line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with olive oil. Pat flounder dry with paper towel, then add to baking sheet, spacing apart. Season all over with .75 teaspoon salt and black pepper as desired. Spoon oreganata topping over tops of flounder, pressing to adhere (this is a great task for a kitchen helper), then bake until breadcrumbs are golden and fish is cooked through, 10-12 minutes (see recipe tip).

Step 5

While fish bakes, add feta, butter, bell pepper, tomatoes, olives, juice of 1 lemon, remaining garlic, .5 teaspoon salt, and black pepper as desired to pot with orzo, still off heat, and stir to combine. Stir in .25 cup pasta cooking water until combined and creamy, adding more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed (see recipe tip). Set aside until ready to serve.

Step 6

Divide bell pepper and feta orzo among serving plates. Top with flounder oreganata and garnish with dill. Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing over. Dig in! 

All recipe ingredients should be cooked to a safe internal temperature according to USDA guidelines. After preparing a recipe, please store any leftovers in the refrigerator.