Sunday, February 7, 2010

Salmon parcels

We try to eat fish at least once a week - not only for its nutritional value, but as a nice easy option for me to cook on a week night!

I used to reserve salmon for nights when I had a little more time, but more recently this has been a favourite as a fast option!  This is great baked in the oven, but I find there is very little difference (other than time) when microwaved.
First, choose the freshest salmon fillets you can find.
Remove pin bones (that's the row of bones you can see below, or feel if you run your hand across the grain) using tweezers, and remove the skin (if you prefer) by sliding a sharp knife between the skin and the flesh.
Next, trim to individual portions.  Our local supermarket does a pretty good job of this for us, but we love sashimi so much that I always decide the fillets are "uneven" or "the wrong shape" or "too long for the dish I want to use" so that I have an excuse to take the finest slices off one end of each fillet:
See, now I have nice, thick, even fillets for dinner - and I can slice the small pieces as thinly as possible to make sashimi:
Serve in ramekins with good soy sauce and tiny cocktail forks :)
Apologies for the diversion - where was I?  Oh, yeah, salmon parcels.

Decide what you want to throw in with the salmon!  I like lemon slices and onion, (or leeks, depending on the season), or julienne carrots with oyster sauce, or lime and manuka honey - so many options!  Best you figure out what works for you.  Today, I'm using red onion, because I love the pink colour it goes when cooked.
Slice your onion thinly:
Does anyone else think the onion looks surprised?  It makes me giggle..

Place each salmon fillet in the middle of a square of baking paper, and assemble flavouring on top:
Red onion, fresh thyme, and a squeeze of lemon.

Wrap the parcels tightly, and secure with butchers string or these magic silicone bands I bought in Portland.  Remember, the goal is to keep the steam inside the parcel, so you want to fold the paper so it can't escape.
Place on a microwave-safe plate or tray, and nuke 'em for 3-5 minutes on Medium-High.  Told you this was easy.  (You can bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes at 180C if you prefer.  Just make sure your paper and string are oven-safe.)
A short while later, the salmon has made its own sauce, and the onion has melted into the top of the fish.  Yum.

I discard the herbs before serving (they look gross once cooked, and they've done their bit by now).  You can serve in the paper if you like, or on rice.  I'm currently hooked on soba noodles, so went this way with fresh steamed greens.



  1. Guess what I'm having tonight...

    (I eat salmon parcel anyway, but the idea of sashimi as an entree is inspired - especially for me, 'cause one fillet is kind of big for one)

  2. Would like to apologise for the placement of goldfish picture next to (orange) salmon fillet while this post is at the top of the page. No goldfish were harmed in the making of this dish. Promise.