Pouch-Cooked Salmon with Basil, Bell Pepper and Balsamic Glaze

Flavors soar in one little pouch - lemon-scented salmon, onions and peppers, basil, and balsamic glaze! So simple too... And the coolest technique is the basil - inserted 1/2-inch into the flesh of the salmon. One little trick and the basil flavor is infused...

I love pouch cooking - aside from mess-free baking, the pouch creates the perfect steam for keeping foods moist. Especially tender proteins like salmon. So grab that parchment paper and start pouching! 

Pouch-Cooked Salmon with Basil, Bell Pepper and Balsamic Glaze

4 salmon fillets, about 6 ounces each
8 fresh basil leaves, plus extra for garnish if desired
1 green bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
1/2 cup thinly sliced white onion
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1-2 lemons, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 teaspoons balsamic glaze

Place a large baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cut two crosswise slices into flesh of each piece of salmon, each about 1/2-inch deep. Roll up the basil leaves and stuff them into the slits in the salmon. 
Arrange the bell pepper and onion slices on 4 pieces of parchment paper (arrange them in the center widthwise, and somewhat towards one end lengthwise; this makes folding easier and more even). Place the salmon on top of the bell pepper and onion.  Season the salmon with salt and pepper. 
Top the salmon with the lemon slices and then drizzle with the oil.
Pull up the longer end of the parchment paper and fold it over the salmon, so the two ends meet. Starting from one side, roll up the two pieces of paper together to form, and completely seal, four pouches. Place the pouches directly on the hot baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
Transfer the pouches to individual plates and open carefully to release steam. Drizzle the balsamic glaze over the salmon and garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Serves 4