Monday, September 14, 2009

Dinner for One

Okay don't go getting all sad that one has to eat alone! But these days it seems that there are a lot of us out there that do just that. I mean, not just single people, but there are folks who's spouses and/or partners travel for work, or some people have the night shift, different schedules, anyway, you get my drift. But there is no need to take a "pass" on cooking for yourself! Heck, not only should you do this with joy, but go on and have a glass of wine with the meal too! I will show you a clever way around making sure you don't have to waste any of that bottle you open for yourself. (don't worry- I am not going to say drink it all!) See tomorrow's post for this great tip!

So I thought I would start a weekly post of an easy recipe that you can throw together fairly quickly and if you do find yourself with a dinner guest, you can double or triple depending how many people you will have.

One of my go to dinners for years has been Salmon and Leeks Baked in Parchment. The recipe is actually from The Best of Martha Stewart Living, What to Have for Dinner (Time Publishing Ventures Inc, 1996). This book is a compilation of recipes taken from her magazine over the years. An oldie now but a goodie.

So here is what you do:

Get yourself a roll of parchment paper at a kitchen shop or even supermarkets stock this now.

1 sheet of parchment
1 salmon fillet, 6 to 8 ounce
1/2 a leek, washed well and thinly sliced
3-4 cherry tomatoes, halved (optional)
dry white wine

olive oil

salt and pepper
2-3 sprigs of fresh herbs, like parsley, chopped (I used basil here)
melted butter

1.Preheat the oven to 350°. Fold a large sheet of parchment paper in half and cut out a "heart" shape about 3-4 inches larger that the fish fillet. Place the fish near the fold and place the leeks next to it. (see photo above)
2. Drizzle fish with a little wine and olive oil, and sprinkle with salt, pepper and parsley.
3. Brush the edges of the parchment paper with the melted butter, fold paper to enclose the fish, and make small overlapping folds to seal the edges, starting at the curve of the heart. ( see photo below, although mine looks more like a calzone shape than a heart! but you get the idea). Be sure it is well sealed and there are no gaps. Brush the outside of the package with melted butter and place on a baking sheet.

4. Bake until paper is puffed and brown, about 10-15 minutes.
5. Carefully, open package (steam will escape and be very hot!) and VoilĂ ! A lovely little low fat, nutritious meal for one! Serve with a salad if you like or a side of couscous or rice is great too!


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