This Salmon en Papillote is so flavorful and cooked perfectly every time. Serve along with a baked potato or quinoa for a complete and healthy meal.
When I was younger, I disliked fish. My family cooked it all of the time and I remember the awful fishy smell that would pervade the house while a whole fish (with head still attached) made its way to the table. If there’s one sure-fire way to get your children not to like fish, it’s to leave its head on. At that age, we really don’t want to know we’re eating Nemo’s cousin.
Of course I would end up marrying a seafood lover. I learned to cook a few simple shrimp and salmon dishes for my dear hubby and developed a taste for it as well. Now our children are big seafood fans so we eat it on a regular basis, especially salmon. This fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are nutrients that keep our heart and brain healthy, and rich with vitamins that are good for our skin, hair, bones, and teeth. It also contains helpful minerals that fight against certain cancers and diseases.
I found these parchment pouches to be a very delicious (and clean) way to cook fish. En papillote is a French term meaning “in parchment” and is a method of sealing meat or veggies tightly in a parchment paper pocket which steams as it bakes and traps all of the delicious juices and flavors in the enclosed food.
You don’t even need to cut out the heart shapes if time is a factor. Tightly folding a squared sheet of parchment will produce the same results.
The time to bake will vary upon how thick your cut of fish is and if you like it medium rare or well done. I usually partially unfold one of the packets to check if it’s cooked. If it needs longer be sure to re-fold the packet before returning to the oven. If it needs just a little more time, they will continue to steam within the packet if kept tightly sealed on top of the stove for a few minutes. We love to eat these with a baked potato or a side of quinoa and we serve them in the parchment so that each person can unwrap their own little packages!
I hope you enjoy these and remember to tag #wifemamafoodie on Instagram if you snap a pic! It makes my day to see what you’re cooking up! Have a great week, friends!
- 4 (5-6 oz.) salmon fillets, fresh or thawed from frozen
- half a bunch of asparagus, washed and ends trimmed, about 8-10 oz. (can also use thinly sliced zucchini or trimmed green beans)
- 1-1.5 cups grape or cherry tomatoes
- 2 small lemons, sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary or thyme
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- salt and pepper
- 4 pieces of Parchment Paper cut to about 15 inches. Doesn't have to be exact.
- Fold parchment paper in half lengthwise and cut out half a heart shape at the fold (like you used to do in school) so that when the paper is unfolded it will be a full heart. See this tutorial on Bon Appétit for more detailed instructions. You can also just use a squared sheet of paper if time is a factor. You want to have several inches of paper surrounding your food to give enough room to fold.
- Preheat oven to 400ºF. Evenly divide the asparagus spears between the 4 pieces of parchment, placing them on one side of the heart. I used very thin asparagus spears, so if yours are thick you may want to slice them in half lengthwise so they cook evenly with the fish. Top each stack of asparagus with salmon, herbs, a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil. Evenly divide the tomatoes between the packages and place lemon slices over the salmon.
- Cover with the other side of parchment paper. Beginning at the top curved part of the heart, begin making overlapping folds all the way down to close the package. When you finish folding down the side, twist the very end securely to keep the folds in place.
- Put parchment packages on a rimmed cookie sheet and place pan onto the middle rack in preheated oven. Give them each a little space so the heat distributes evenly and make sure they are sealed well. Bake for 12-15 minutes (a few minutes longer if fish is more than 1-inch thick or if you like it well done.) When cooked, fish should separate easily with a fork. I like to serve the salmon in the packets since they're full of delicious flavors and we usually eat this with a baked potato or quinoa.