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These foil pouches filled with cod and summer squash are great for solo meals or for a crowd. [Photographs: Yasmin Fahr]

Cooking for one can be a difficult task, especially as most recipes are designed to serve four. Plus, as one recipe writer once said to me, "A cooking-for-one column can feel a little depressing." (I think she was sick of the one she was writing. Fair enough.) Well, be depressed no longer, single ladies and gentlemen, because I have a recipe here that is so easy to scale and portion that you can buy and prep the exact amount you need, whether for one, two, three, four, or fourteen. Plus it's dead easy to make, and counts as a one-pot dish, which means I'm ready to declare this one a triple threat.

Living alone, I understand the challenge of having too many leftovers, especially when testing recipes that need to feed multiple people. But when I'm looking for a quick and healthy dinner that's just for me, this technique of steaming fish in a foil pouch is perfect.

This is, more or less, a recipe for fish en papillote, though en papillote technically requires a parchment-paper wrapper. Parchment looks prettier than foil when the paper browns (a sign that it's close to being done), but when I'm cooking for myself, foil is my go-to material because I always have some on hand and am too lazy to cut the paper—pathetic, I know, but no one knows but me!

When thinking about this recipe, salmon was my first idea, but I realized that ensuring the salmon was cooked medium-rare was a lot harder with it wrapped up. Enter cod, a light and mild white fish that cooks quickly, perfect for absorbing the fresh herbs and splash of white wine it's cooked with here.

It's important to seal the packet well to trap steam and cook what's inside, but be careful when opening it as the steam will rush out.

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