It’s been a whirlwind week — supposedly on vacation, enjoying the days poolside or on the beach, but secretly staying up at night long after the rest of the family (yes, the *entire* family) went to sleep to stay on top of ever-increasing work — so this recipe is coincidentally very fitting.
Salmon baked in parchment is fast and easy so it’s perfect during the hectic week, but it also works into the weekend because, well, it’s salmon. It’s gorgeous. And something about cutting into crisp, crackling parchment and serving it like that seems very impressive.
This is a baseline recipe for the salmon in parchment. We placed our salmon fillets on asparagus and flavored with lemon and thyme because that is such a classic combination, but whatever vegetable(s) is/are fresh at the market is best. The same goes for the herbs.
Salmon Baked in Parchment with Lemon
4 boneless salmon fillets, about 6 ounces each
1 small red onion (or shallot), thinly sliced
salt and pepper
juice from 1 lemon
3-4 thin strips of lemon zest
fresh herbs of your choice (I used thyme)
4 tablespoons olive oil
any combination of fresh vegetables (see suggestions below) (I used asparagus)
Preheat over to 400 F. Cut 4 large sheets of parchment (about 12″ x 16″ inches). Fold each sheet in half, and cut out a large heart.
Divide vegetables equally among the parchment sheets, arranging a “bed” on one half of each sheet. Lay one salmon fillet skin-side down on top of each bed. Season with salt and pepper. Place a few slices of red onion, lemon zest strips, and sprigs of herbs on top. Sprinkle with lemon juice and drizzle with about 1 tablespoon olive oil.
Fold parchment heart in half, then seal with small folds along the open edge. Tuck the end under.
Bake about 10 minutes to get to medium rare. For medium, 1-2 minutes longer.
Unwrap, or cut through the top of the pouch, and serve.
Some Vegetables, Herbs and Flavors I Like
- halved cherry tomatoes and thin green beans (haricot verts)
- thinly sliced fennel and tarragon
- fresh spinach and razor thin slices of garlic
- sugar snap peas (replace olive oil with butter for this one – oh my!)
- snow peas and edamame, replace lemon juice with sake and soy sauce, replace half olive oil with sesame oil
- chopped kale leaves
- sliced zucchini and fresh dill