It was 79 degrees in Kansas City today. Today is March 12. 79 degrees... on March 12. In what universe does that happen!?! My favorite universe, that's what. Also a universe that makes a girl realize just how close we are to swimsuit season.
So, what better way to prepare than fresh fish and veggies steamed in parchment in the oven? This is arguably the quickest recipe I've come across in my new favorite cookbook.
If you're like me and this is your first time cooking in parchment, you can find three different ways to use it. This is the 'twist', but all seem super easy and make this method of cooking a no-brainer.
Now if this doesn't look like a superb Spring dinner, I'm not sure what would.
Salmon in Parchment with Green Beans and Lemon Zest
4 skinless salmon fillets (about 6 ounces each)
3/4 pound green beans, trimmed
12 wide strips (1 to 2 inches) lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon capers, rinsed and drained
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place salmon fillets in center of four 16-inch-long pieces of parchment. Top with green beans, lemon zest, and capers. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle each with 1 tablespoon oil. Fold parchment into a "twist" or "envelope" shape. *"Twist" is folding the parchment over the food like a letter and then twisting each end tightly to hold; "Envelope" is bringing the wide ends of the parchment together then folding down three times on top of food. Fold the ends under the food packet to hold.
Place packets on a rimmed baking sheet and transfer to oven. Cook until packets are puffed up (salmon will be opaque throughout), 12 to 15 minutes. Serve immediately.
This recipe is as easy as it sounds. It's inexpensive, too... and delicious... and healthy... and quick... and what more could you want?! I bought salmon fillets with the skin on and put them in the packet like that. It's much easier to peel off once the salmon is cooked and, to my knowledge, it's not a bad thing to cook with the skin on. Right? C'mon, they do it in restaurants all the time...