[salmon recipe below]
It’s been over 2 years since I last posted videos on YouTube and that’s for a few reasons. I got very sick with depression and it was difficult to pick myself back up and often times even to get out of bed. I hadn’t been cooking very much because my mental health was suffering, so I didn’t feel right teaching others to cook if I wasn’t cooking myself. Lastly, and maybe even most importantly, I was intimidated and didn’t feel good enough. In the last few years on social media, the “foodie” culture blew up. Everyone was posting all these beautiful pictures of food and I felt like my food didn’t measure up anymore. Who was I to make videos?
But as I started to get better and do some soul searching I realized and remembered that the main purpose of cooking isn’t about making something to photograph and filter. It’s about feeding yourself and others and making dishes that make you feel good. Not everything has to be Pinterest-worthy (or “Pinterest AF” as my friends would say, hehe).
I figured that others might be feeling the same way about cooking too, which is why Season 3 is called “Get Your (Cooking) Rhythm Back.” I want to show you that you can cook good food even if you’re not feeling your best. There’s always a way to get your rhythm back.
This is why my first recipe for Season 3 is Salmon En Papillote; it sounds fancy, but it’s incredibly easy to make!
And, as a bonus, salmon happens to be really good for your brain health and mood because it’s high in omega-3 fatty acids – a good kind of fat! By eating salmon and other foods rich in omega-3s (walnuts, flax and chia seeds, seaweed, leafy greens, etc.), you can give your brain some TLC and can feel better mentally too! Enjoy:
Easiest Salmon En Papillote Ever (serves 2)
- 2 pieces of salmon fillet, 4-6oz each
- 1 cup of baby spinach
- 10-12 grape or cherry tomatoes
- ~ 2 tbsp. olive oil
- salt & pepper
Basically, you’ll wrap all these ingredients in parchment paper and bake it in the oven. Here’s a breakdown of how to do that:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175° C). If you’re using a toaster oven, you can skip this step.
- Take a sheet of parchment paper, about 12×12 inches. Fold it in half, crease it, then unfold it. Lay it down on a flat surface.
- Add 1/2 cup baby spinach just to the side of the crease to make a little bed for the salmon. Season the spinach with a little bit of salt & pepper.
- Next, lay the salmon atop the bed of spinach. Season the salmon with a little bit of salt & pepper as well.
- Then, add 5-6 cherry tomatoes on top of and beside the piece of salmon.
- Drizzle with about 1 tbsp of olive oil.
- Fold the parchment paper over the salmon & veggies. Starting on one side, fold and crease the paper toward the middle of the salmon, creating a tight seal. When you get to the end, tuck the remaining paper underneath (see video for tutorial).
- Repeat steps 2-7 with the second piece of salmon and remaining veggies.
- Put the salmon in the oven/ toaster oven for 20-25 minutes.
- Serve by placing on a plate and unwrapping or cutting open the parchment. This can be eaten alone or with a side of rice, pasta, or potatoes.
As I mention in the video, you can really do any combination of veggies when making Salmon En Papillote; personally, I’m a fan of asparagus and lemon. You can also add things like green beans, bell peppers, shallots, etc. Herbs like dill and thyme work really nicely as well. Get creative and put your favorite veggies in!
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me! I’m also always open to share resources for coping with depression and other mental struggles. I’m here for you. 🙂