Photos by Stacy Zarin-Goldberg; table linens and serving ware courtesy of Crate and Barrel, Bethesda

Summer cooking should be uncomplicated and light. And that’s the beauty of cooking salmon tightly packed in parchment along with citrus, aromatics and a bit of fat.

The fish cooks in its own delicious vapors, the paper browns attractively along its creases, and the ingredients are revealed through the translucent parchment, creating an elegant presentation. 

Tear open the packages hot out of the oven to catch a waft of the sumptuous aromas. 

Try this technique with other varieties of fish, crab, shrimp, chicken, tofu or thinly sliced vegetables.


Serves 4

For the pasta:
1 cup orzo pasta
Salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon butter or vegetable oil

For the fish:
Butter for rubbing parchment paper, plus about 2 tablespoons for fish
4 6-ounce filets of salmon, boneless and skinless
4 paper-thin slices of lemon
4 sprigs of fresh thyme
¼ cup of Pernod or white vermouth

For cooking instructions, see the gallery below: