Sheet Pan Meal: Salmon with Asparagus, Fennel, Mushrooms and Lemon Butter
By Evan Kleiman
When you’re doing a fish sheet pan dinner, think about how fast fish cooks. It’s the most delicate and least forgiving protein when it comes to overcooking so you will want to either pair it with vegetables that cook equally fast or you’ll want to start your veggies first then add the fish after a few minutes. Make a pan butter with lemon zest and dill while the sheet pan is in the oven.
4 4-ounce salmon fillets, skin-on (wild, seasonal salmon preferred)
1 bunch medium-thick asparagus
1 large bulb fennel, round not flat
1 large or 2 small shallots, peeled and sliced
1 basket white or cremini mushrooms, cut in halves or quarters if large
Salt and pepper for seasoning
1 tablespoon snipped fresh dill
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon of capers, rinsed (optional)
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon minced or micro-planed garlic
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Salt and pepper the salmon and set aside at room temperature while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
Cut or snap the bottom parts of the asparagus stalks so you’re left only with tender stems. Lay them across one short end of the sheet pan in a single layer. Drizzle them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Cut the top and bottom ends off the fennel bulb and remove the tough outer layer. It will seem like a lot to throw away but the outer layer must go. Thinly slice the fennel and put it in a bowl. Add the sliced shallots, olive oil, salt and pepper and toss the fennel and shallots to coat. Lay the mixture out on the opposite end of the sheet pan from the asparagus.
Add the salmon, skin-side down in the center of the pan. Season the mushrooms with olive oil, salt and pepper, and place around salmon. Place sheet pan in the oven. Remove after 12 minutes; check fish for doneness, depending on thickness. Roll asparagus and fennel around to expose the lighter parts; return to the oven for a few more minutes if needed.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan with the lemon zest, dill, garlic and capers. Cook until you smell the aroma of the herbs and garlic. Set aside. When done remove sheet pan from oven, plate individually with vegetables and drizzle the herb butter over all. Serve with lemon wedges if desired.