It took me a long time to be able to cook fish with stellar results. I’ve made more than my share of mediocre scallops and I’ve played the “is it done?” dance with salmon so many times that I might as well be dating it.
Inspired by an episode of the Food Network that I watched from the treadmill at the gym (I can’t be the only one who does that?) I wanted to create something that I could prepare in less than ten minutes that would be just as easy to pop into the oven as it would be to grill over the summer.
This is really a template for any type of baked fish and I’ve made similar dishes with halibut and cod using a parchment paper packet. As it turns out, there are a lot of things in your kitchen that you can turn into a packet for cooking your fish. I try to eat salmon once a week, because it’s full of omega-3 fatty acids and it’s filling without feeling heavy and rich. Most mild white fish will work as a substitute.
If you’re cooking for more than two people, you can double this recipe. If you’re flying solo in the kitchen, you can either half it or save the leftovers for lunch the next day. You can turn the salmon and tomatoes into crostini or atop a bed of greens for a chilled salad that you won’t even need to add dressing.
I love making this packet as is but you can also throw whatever vegetables you have in the fridge, like asparagus, mushrooms or spinach, in there to up the nutritional ante.
Your foil packet will basically steam the contents and you’ll wind up with a lot of juices inside, so use caution as you open them. Scoop the fish and veggies with a spatula or slotted spoon and top with the juices from the packet. Serve alongside a green salad and a piece of crusty bread or over couscous for extra protein.
A glass of red wine wouldn’t hurt, either.
- 2 (5 ounces each) salmon fillets
- 1 teaspoon olive oil plus 1 tablespoon
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ of 1 (14-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, drained
- 1 chopped shallot
- 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- Preheat oven or grill to 400 degrees F. Place each salmon fillet atop a sheet of foil. Wrap the ends of the foil to form a spiral shape, like a candy wrapper.
- Sprinkle salmon with 1 teaspoons olive oil, salt, and pepper. In a small bowl, stir the tomatoes, shallots, 1 tablespoon of oil, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper in a medium bowl to blend.
- Spoon ½ the tomato mixture over each piece of salmon. Fold the sides of the foil over the fish and tomato mixture, covering completely and seal the packets closed.
- Place the foil packets on a heavy large baking sheet or grill pan. Cook until the salmon is just cooked through, about 25 minutes. Using a large metal spatula, transfer the foil packets to plates and serve.