Diane, A Broad
November 26, 2012

Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter

This is the first meal I prepared after I arrived in Nice. One of the best things and worst things about moving is a new kitchen. Best: it’s so clean! Worst: there’s no food in it! So I ran to Monoprix and came back with the essentials (eggs, pasta, cheese, lemons, bacon, butter, and wine) and some stuff for dinner (salmon, broccoli, parsley). Because apparently, whenever I need to make a single-girl dinner, it ends up being salmon.

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter)

Like many of the recipes I share with you, this one tastes and sounds fancy, but is a total cinch to make. Just wrap up all the ingredients in a paper packet and bake; that’s it. I made it for a solo dinner, but I can see making this for guests too — baking off several packets at once and opening them all up at the table, puffs of lemon-scented steam escaping from the open packets. Thankfully I had a bunch of things when I moved here, such as the best spice grinder from this reviews site, some baking essentials and most important of all the Slicers without which I probably wouldn’t be able to make salmon.

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter)

You can use whatever herbs you like in the packet, and even mix it up by adding different oils, spices, and vegetables. I served my salmon with buttered pasta and steamed broccoli with parmesan, letting the juices from the packet run into the rest of the plate, imparting the pasta and vegetables with the flavors and lemon and brown butter.

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter)

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Paper with Brown Butter)

Makes 1 serving, easily multipliable for more.

2 tablespoons butter
3-6 thin slices lemon
1 salmon fillet (6-8 ounces)
1 tablespoon white wine
salt and pepper
chopped parsley or dill


Heat oven to 400°F (200°C).

Place the butter in a small skillet or saucepan and melt over low heat. Continue cooking until the milk solids turn nutty brown and the butter smells toasty, being careful not to burn

Spread out a large square of parchment paper. Lay half your lemon slices on the center of the parchment, place the salmon fillet on the lemon slices, season with salt and pepper, and top with the remaining lemon slices. Pour the brown butter and white wine over the salmon.

Make a packet out of the parchment paper in the following manner: fold up the top and bottom parts of the parchment, touching them in the center over the salmon. Make several small folds down, until the parchment on top almost touches the salmon. Fold up the sides of the packet in small folds as well.

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter)

Place in the oven and bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the salmon is cooked. To check for doneness, open the packet and poke with a fork; the salmon should be opaque and flake easily.

Serve sprinkled with chopped parsley or dill, with sides such as buttered pasta and steamed broccoli with parmesan.

Saumon en Papillote au Beurre Noisette (Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter)


If you’re short on time or lack an oven, you could also do this in the microwave. It’ll only take 2-3 minutes on high.

Music to cook by: Fidelity [Regina Spektor // Begin to Hope]

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4 responses to “Salmon in Parchment with Brown Butter”

  1. Jessica says:

    Wow, that looks like such an easy and tasty recipe! Thanks for helping me sort out my dinner tonight. 🙂

    • It is indeed both of those things! I’d love to see a picture and hear what you thought of it if you do end up making it.

      On a completely separate subject, I love reading about your life in Barcelona! I hope to visit there soon.

  2. Baking or grilling salmon in packets is my favorite way to prepare it! Beautiful presentation too.

  3. Jesse says:

    Simply beautiful. I just got home after living in the south of France (Aix en Provence) for three months and your lovely photos and recipes remind me of just how much I will miss it.

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