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Dinner Tonight: Salmon Papillotes + Creamy Cucumber Side

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The trick to a fully satisfying meal is to play with balance, and this combination strikes the perfect one. Crunchy cucumbers are paired with soft, steamed salmon. A creamy sauce with lemon cools the bold flavor of peppercorns and ginger. Finally, the bit of dill in both recipes ties this Dinner Tonight together.

The Menu 

Click through on the recipe photos or titles to see (and save and print) the full recipes, but we've also written you a handy grocery list and game plan below.

Salmon Papillotes with Red Peppercorns, Lime and Fresh Ginger by Babette's Feast

Creamy Cucumber "Side" by Lizthechef

The Grocery List

Serves 4, with leftover salmon

5 fillets of salmon (about 7 ounces each)
2 inches of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
3 tablespoons red peppercorns
1 ½ limes, freshly juiced
5 sprigs, plus two tablespoons fresh dill
5 teaspoons thick cream
1 tablespoon fresh chives cut into small pieces
1 organic, English cucumber (about 1 lb sized)
1/2 Vidalia onion, peeled
1/2 cup best quality Greek yogurt
Zest of 1 Meyer lemon

We know you've got a well-stocked pantry and refrigerator so you'll have onion, salt, pepper, olive oil, rice wine vinegar, and cane sugar on hand. If not, add those to the list!

The Plan

1. Get your cucumber side started. Slice the cucumber and onion as thinly as possible, place slices in a colander, sprinkle them with salt, and seat the colander over a bowl. Refrigerate.

2. While the mixture is refrigerating, turn to the salmon. Preheat your oven. Make your foil packets, and place the salmon inside of them, skin-side down. Season them with the salt, Sichuan pepper, lime juice, dill, and ginger.

3. Bake in the oven around 10 minutes, depending on how thick the fish fillets are. The papillote, if closed tightly, should blow up with steam.

7. While the salmon is baking, take the cucumber and onion mixture out of the refrigerator. Rinse the salt from the cucumber and onion. Pat the slices dry using a kitchen towel.

8. Turn the cucumber and onion into a medium-sized bowl and add the sugar and vinegar, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Fold in the yogurt, dill and lemon zest. Stick back in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.

9. When the salmon packets are out, discard the dill. Place 1 teaspoon of thick cream on top of each salmon fillet, sprinkle with the cream, chives, and fleur de sel, and serve with the cucumbers. Enjoy!

Photos by Sarah Shatz

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Tags: Ginger, Lime, Salmon, Yogurt, Weeknight Cooking, Dinner, Faster, Everyday Cooking, Menu Ideas, Dinner Tonight