Parchment Meals

Ok, this is a trick I learned eating out at restaurants and reading cookbooks. Parchment paper meals are super easy and delish, and make for next-to-nothing clean up. You can cook pretty much anything this way, and the pouch you make out of the parchment paper allows the food inside to steam up very nicely- with all ingredients blending as they cook.

One idea is a type of Greek meal (seen above from Everyday Food Magazine)- lay out a large piece of parchment paper on the counter, and toss on a chicken breast, some artichoke hearts (chopped), some red onion, kalamata olives, and tomatoes- top it off with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper and feta cheese, fold up the sides, and crimp them together so the pouch remains closed. Set the pouch in a baking dish with sides (so that if any of the juices run out, they'll be caught and not dirty up the oven), place in the oven- preheated to about 375, and let cook for about 25 minutes. Depending on your oven, it may take longer, but feel free to check it after about 20 minutes to see how the chicken is doing- you be the judge on time. Once the chicken is finished, just empty the pouch onto your plate and eat up!

Seriously, you can cook any meal you dream up this way; some other ideas are:
  • Tuna steak with chopped jalapeno, soy sauce, chopped fresh ginger, garlic and snow peas;

  • Any kind of white fish with julienne veggies (onions, carrots, celery)- maybe some rosemary and thyme sprinkled on top

  • Mexican flare- chicken breast with sliced bell peppers and onions, chopped jalapeno, and sprinkle generously with garlic salt, chili powder, and cumin powder- top off with cilantro and sour cream when it's finished

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