This is now my go-to method to cook salmon in the winter and spring, when the weather doesn’t always allow us to get to our grill. There are many reasons I love it. First, it is a great method to cook whole salmon if you want to scale up for lots of guests. It is also forgiving – because of the ‘jus’, the meat stays tender and moist if you let it go a few extra minutes. The jus is flavorful, like a luscious seafood stock that you can dip crusty bread into. Finally, the ingredient list is adaptable. In the winter, it’s easy to find leeks. In the spring, you can substitute spring onions and green garlic with their lovely long leaves. I suggest leaving citrus out of this, as it tends to make the jus too sour. —monkeymom
large leek (you can substitute green garlic or spring onions)
large shallot, sliced (you can substitute onion)
garlic clove, sliced thinly
fresh tarragon or thyme stems (you can substitute your herb of choice)
Slice leek in half lengthwise beginning at white end but not cutting through green end. Rinse thoroughly under cold water separating leaves to remove trapped dirt. Cut green ends off of leek and reserve. Slice white and light green parts.
Select a baking sheet large enough to accommodate the fish. Lay out a long double length of heavy-duty aluminum foil on top of the baking sheet across the shorter end of the sheet. Place another perpendicular to the first.
Lay out the leek greens on the foil to form a bed where your salmon can nestle. Add half of the sliced leeks, shallots, garlic, herbs and bay leaves. Place the cleaned salmon on top of greens. Generously salt and pepper the both sides of the salmon. Drizzle all over with olive oil and rub to cover top and bottom. Lay tarragon or other herb stems across the top of the fish and cover the top with the rest of the sliced leeks.
Optional step: insert an electronic meat thermometer probe inside the thickest end of the salmon. This will help you monitor the cooking process without opening the foil.
Bring up the edges of the foil along both ends of the salmon. Add the wine. Seal the edges together to form a compact tent around the salmon (let the cord of the thermometer poke through one of the seams if you are using one). Repeat with the second layer of foil. The salmon can rest until you are ready to roast.
Place in oven. Roast until internal temperature is 140 degrees. For a 2-3 lb salmon filet this took about 25-30 minutes.
Let rest for at least 10 minutes. Unwrap and remove to serving platter. Discard green leek ends.Top exposed flesh with jus and vegetables.
Note: This is also a fantastic way to cook whole salmon. For a 4lb salmon, you can use relatively the same amount of ingredients. Increase cooking time to 35-40 minutes.
My favorite distraction is to cook. Though science and cooking/baking have a lot in common, I'm finding that each allows me to enjoy very different parts of my life. Cooking connects me with my heritage, my family, friends, and community. I'm really enjoying learning from the food52 community, who expose me to different ingredients and new ways to cook.