I woke up the other day and made lunch. I ate it for breakfast.
Because I knew I wouldn’t be able to grab lunch later in the day.
See, I was flying down to Philadelphia for a conference.
With the CEO of my company.
On our teeny tiny corporate plane.
So petite, that you can’t stand up in the cabin. You have to crouch.
Especially when you’re wearing 4-inch heels.
Flying south, we saw the entire island of Manhattan and I could almost make out my old apartment building on the edge of Central Park at the 86th Street transverse.
Flying north, I dreamt of dinner.
Mac and cheese, to be exact.
From a box.
Salmon en papillote with tomatoes and basil
With some cilantro on its last leg and a filet of coho salmon in the fridge, I decided to make Mexican-inspired salmon en papillote a few weeks ago. I piled salmon, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice and a splash of tequila on a sheet of parchment paper and wrapped it up like a package. I couldn’t remember how long to cook the salmon for, and while flipping through recipes, I stumbled upon Dorie Greenspan‘s salmon and tomatoes en papillote. Turns out it takes about 10 minutes at a high temperature. My original cilantro salmon was good. Dorie’s salmon in a parchment cocoon is fabulous.
I like to make my salmon in individual packages, but if you’re serving a crowd, you can make an entire filet wrapped in a very big sheet of parchment (or aluminum foil). There are lots of great flavor combinations – try cilantro/lime/tequila or thyme/skinny asparagus/white wine or ginger/sesame oil/soy sauce/spring onions. You get the picture.
Preheat oven to 475ºF. Throw a handful of small tomatoes (cherry, pear, etc.) into a pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and sauté until they start to blister and brown. Pat salmon filets dry with a paper towel and place them on a rectangle of parchment (about 4 times as large as the filet). Crush a few leaves of basil in your hand and lay them on top of the fish. Top with a slice or two of lemon and a few squeezes of lemon juice. Add a nice drizzle or two of olive oil and dust with salt and pepper. Surround the fish with the tomatoes.
Fold the parchment around the fish into an airtight envelope (or something resembling an airtight envelope). Tie with kitchen twine. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, depending on how well done you like your salmon.
Cut open the packet and eat.