I wouldn’t call myself lazy but I will admit that I find myself staring down a plate of plain scrambled eggs for dinner more nights than I’d like to admit.
Something about figuring out that third meal of the day that just feels like… much. That third mean of a full day fussing in and out of the kitchen. That third meal of the day within an entire year of cooking nearly every meal for ourselves. Ya feel me?
I’ve found a little hack for myself. Well, for days when even I run out of eggs. The trick is, prep a quick dinner when I have the energy for it – at breakfast. While I’m standing in the kitchen, sipping coffee and inevitably burning my morning toast, I whip up a little vegetable roast or prep chickpeas for braising, or toss together a sheet pan dinner of chicken shawarma (that last one is a real treat). The idea is to eliminate the fuss over dinner come 5:30 because whatever it’s going to be is already mostly ready in the refrigerator. Adulthood? I’ve got it on lock.
This salmon pack dinner has inched its way to the top of my dinner prep list the last week. This recipe comes from my friend Rachel Phipps‘ new book One Pan Pescatarian – a book tailor made for this easy breakfast time dinner prep.
This recipe makes as much or as little as you’d like. Make dinner just for you, double it for your boo, or make it dinner for the whole family! Just increase fish and foil. You’ll find this recipe super versatile. Here’s what you need but feel free to use what you have or prefer:
• canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed. If you prefer another bean, don’t be shy about it!
• fresh tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes. The fresh tomatoes will bake down to soften and create a nice little sauce while the sun-dried tomatoes and a sweet, intense tomato flavor.
• bright green olives (I love castelvetrano olives, thank you Sicily) though capers would also be delicious. Anything briny you like.
• olive oil, salt and pepper, oregano and aleppo pepper for a simple addition of flavor, richness, and spice.
• salmon, of course though if there’s another fish you prefer – by all means!
To make, hustle out two large pieces of foil. Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over the center of the foil and top with halved cherry tomatoes, some beans, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, olives and seasoning.
Nestle the salmon over the beans and tomatoes and season generously with salt and aleppo pepper.
Rustle up the tops and sides of the foil, creating a little dinner parcel.
Try to create and leave room on the sides and top of the fish for the foil to create a little steam bath for the contents. No need to wrap it all small and tight.
And that’s dinner!
Store the little packages in the refrigerator until you’re ready for dinner. When dinner comes, I throw rice in the cooker or simple toast up a slice of bread. This fish would also be great with a socca flatbread!
All of this foil packing has me thinking about all the things I can pack in foil and grill, especially on my next camping trip. I’m taking notes.
I hope this serves you well, friends! Let’s dinner with dignity – we’re worth it!
My love to you!
Weeknight Dinner: Mediterranean Salmon Parcels
An simple and delicious weeknight dinner that can be made over breakfast and baked up at dinnertime.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: Serves 1 1x
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 cup chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil
- 4–5 caltleveltrano olives
- Sprinkle of dried oregano
- 1 salmon filet
- Sea salt and Aleppo chili flakes
- Fresh parsley
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- Crusty bread or cooked white rice
- Place rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lay out one large piece of foil per portion of fish.
- Halve the cherry tomatoes and roughly chop the sun-dried tomatoes. In the middle of the foil drizzle olive oil and pile all of the tomatoes, chickpeas, and olives. Sprinkle with oregano, salt and fresh cracked black pepper.
- Lay the salmon filet skin side down atop the vegetables and sprinkle with salt and Aleppo chili flakes.
- Gather the sides of the foil up and around the salmon and tomatoes and make a little boat. Fold and scrunch the foil at the top and both ends to seal into a packet. Try to leave as much room for the salmon to steam as possible while keeping it sealed. Transfer parcel to a baking tray.
- Bake the salmon packet for about 30 minutes or until the salmon is just cooked, tender and flaky.
- Unfurl the salmon, being cautious of the steam and spoon salmon, tomatoes and beans into a bowl with warm rice. Enjoy dinner!
Photos with my friend Jon Melendez.