Join Bennett-Watt and learn how to make a Salmon Surprise recipe.
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How to Make Salmon Surprise
I know. I have a great idea. We have so man y ingredients leftover so I thought I’d make a salmon surprise in parchment. So, I'm going to walk right over here to the refrigerator and kind of look through the refrigerator and see what we got. But I know we got some fabulous ingredients.
Oh, I see some capers. We used those earlier today in a hash and some red onion, some garlic, that will be great. Oh, and of course my salmon beautiful color. And I'm going to need some butter. I know that—here we go.
Oh, these beautiful great tomatoes. I didn’t have a chance to use those but I know those look great. Let’s see, oh some parsley. These will be a great garnish. You know what I need, I need something that give it a kick. Oh, here we go, here is some chardonnay, just what I'm looking for and something a little more substantial. I need some lemon and some potatoes. Great! Here we go, just a few of these beautiful little new potatoes. I'm going to grab a couple of lemons. I think we’re in business.
If you’ve never worked with parchment paper, it’s very easy. This whole concept is really based around like almost tin foil. What happens is, you place all the ingredients in a pocket, close it up and the fish actually steams in its own juices along with all the other flavorings you’ve added. We’ll put that in a very hot oven. It will get nice and puffy and you can present that in a great platter. It will look beautiful. It's very impressive. It's a great elegant dinner menu.
But again, it's whatever is in your kitchen. Add some things really nice. So let’s start with this, it's going to be really fun. I'm going to grab my parchment paper. What you're just going to do is you're going to pull this over and just give it a little crease, very simple. Now some chefs always say “Cut it into a half or some semicircle”, but you don’t really need to do that. So I'm going to take my salmon. I'm going to open this up and I'm going to take that fillet. Do you remember I already cut this up in a perfect portion size? I'm going to put that right there. I am going to cut my lemons first and get all my cutting out of the way. Here we go. I have too much to cut.
Oh and I got these wonderful herbs here so, that will be nice. These containers are like child-proof. I can’t get into them. I'm going to cut these beautiful little cherry tomatoes in half. You know what, I'm just going to give myself a little more rinse. I'm going to put these here and finish up all my cutting. I just got too excited.
This is such a great and easy meal. I do this all the time. You can do it with chicken breast or even with pork, anything in your refrigerator, whatever you like. I've done it with actually pork and just sliced apples on the bottom. Put some thyme in that, some butter, a little bit of calvados, brandy. Oh, it's just wonderful.
You can put a little dollop or just a drizzle of cream. I think that’s enough tomatoes. I'm going to cut up these nice little potatoes. Get rid off that little bruise there. I think this is rather a large one. So, I'm going to do this in a slice because I want to get these cooked evenly. If I quarter them, it won’t work very well. So, we’re just going to just do nice little slices. If I quarter them, they’ll take longer and therefore the fish might overcook. So, I'm going to be really sensitive to that because that fish is just too good to ruin.
Okay, let’s see. I want my herbs. Here we go. Some basil, I'm just going to julienne these. I like lots of basil. You smell that? It almost has a licorice smell to it. It's just wonderful. I'm just going to have these influences of Mediterranean. I think I’ll do one more leaf. I'm going to throw in some rosemary too. Take a grip. You don’t need much rosemary, just a little bit right there. That will make it really nice. Okay, a little thyme, we’ll give this a quick chop and I'm going to roll my basil leaves up. This makes quick work. So, you just roll them up just like a cigar, nice and tight and then a nice little julienne.
We’ll just gather those over the fish. If I didn’t mention, I already have my oven pre-set at 425 degrees. Okay, I'm going to mix all my herbs together. There is my herb mixture. Okay, I've got everything cut. I'm ready to go, my salt, my pepper, my butter, my wine standing by, okay. Let’s get it on.
What I'm going to do is because I want the fish to cook nicely and I want the potatoes to cook evenly, I'm going to put a layer of potatoes right here. I don’t want to mount them too much because as I said, I want them to cook. It will be at high heat. So now I'm going to take my fish, put that right there. Flip that over. Now this is the fun part, just start scattering your ingredients around. Tomatoes look nice. I've got these herbs right here. Actually, you know what I'm going to take the onions and layer that. I'm going to take my capers and just sprinkle those over. That will be great. Oh, this is looking good already. Here we go. Some garlic, got to have some garlic, a little more. If you're sharing this with a friend, you’ll be okay. I'm going to do a squeeze of lemon, catching the leaves as I go. Nice!
Then, I'm going to add some wine. I'm just going to drizzle just a little bit. This is almost like a beurre blanc sauce really when it's done. That’s good. And now I'm going to take some butter, got to have butter. Because this is such a lean dish, nice part of butter is worth it. Okay, let’s see. Did I forget anything? My herbs, let’s put those on. That is ready to be folded up.
Okay, I'm going to turn this around and I'm going to fold it this way. It's going to make a nice little encasement. Now what you're going to do is you're going to actually take this and fold the end down like a corner. Then you're just going to keep folding that corner, you keep folding the corner until you proceed all the way around. I got a little paper there. That’s okay, get out of there. Fold, refold, and fold. And what this is, it's going to team this compartment. It's a steaming compartment for the fish and all those flavors are going to meld together. Just join. This is such an easy thing to prepare. You can come home and see what’s in your fridge and just do this with anything. Chicken breasts are great. I do this all the time with chicken breast. You tuck that under and then we’re going to place this on the sheet pan. I actually cover it with a little bit of olive oil, whatever you have handy. Just rub that on there.
So when you do present this at the table, this I completely ready to go and it won’t burn or crack actually. It's what’s fun about this is you cut it into and you cut right into it and the steam comes out and your guest at the table, they smell all these wonderful ingredients all together. It's really great. I'm hungry. Okay, let’s put this in the oven.
As I mentioned before, we’ve had it set at about 450 degrees, 425 degrees. We’re going to check at about 15 to 20 minutes. I hear my salmons are ready, so I'm going to pull that out of the oven. It should be nice and puffed and beautiful. I hope you can get a shot at this because it's absolutely fun to pull out. It's great to show this to your guest. It smells so good. I can hear it bubbling in there too. So what we’re going to do is just put this on a plate. The oil as I mentioned just makes it really nice. You don’t have to worry about it cracking. If you didn’t oil the parchment, it would actually flake and so that’s—you don’t want to do that. So now let’s watch this. Let the steam—this is what you do in front of your guest or have them do it at the table.
You open that up and doesn’t that look delicious? There’s our tomatoes, our potatoes, look how perfectly cooked the potatoes are. Our salmon, look how moist that is, flaky, perfectly cooked. We’ve got our garlic there, our herbs. You know what, you know me I love fresh herbs and I'm going to garnish this. I've got my salsa Verde that I used earlier, early on in the show. So I'm going to just drizzle a little bit over the top, give it a splash of color. I'm going to add some fresh tomatoes here, just on the side, a little sprinkling of parsley and then a beautiful; bunch of some more basil. Of course just a splash of a balsamic and it's time to eat. This isn’t your mother’s salmon surprise. I hope you enjoy it.