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Impulse buy- salt cod- now what?! Help!

I just bought fine looking (Whole Paycheck!) salt cod, but now I'm not sure what to do with it. Recipes I have are, for the most part, of the fried kind. Does anyone have other ideas? It just seems like a waste to make fritters. Help!

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  1. Bacalao al Pil-Pil! Its Basque! Basically, you very slowly poach soaked salt cod in garlic infused-oil, and the gelatin that comes out of it helps emulsify the oil into a sauce.

    see http://www.saveur.com/article/Food/Sa...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Lemon Curry

      How much olive oil, is the fish submerged? I think I have heard of this dish, do you shake the pan at the end to emulsify the sauce?

    2. Look up "brandade" online or in cookbooks as well. It's one of my favourite appetizers: salt cod, mashed potatoes, butter, cream, garlic. Serve as a hot spread with good bread and other provençal appetizers.

      1 Reply
      1. re: TheSnowpea

        I second this rec. Puree well so that it is really smooth, not stringy, and it is heaven.

      2. My uncle used to make a wonderful Bacala dish as one of the seven fishes meal for Christmas Eve. After soaking the salt cod for several days... changing the water many times, it's basically a tomato sauce with all the usual ingredients plus capers and olives. He steamed small potatoes and served it with his version of Bacala. Mario Batali has a very similar recipe here at the Food Network site: (Note: he did not use mint in his recipe)

        http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ma...

        1. Thank you so much! I'm still soaking the cod, so now I have some time to get the ingredients together.

          1. Although Newfoundland-style fish cakes are near and dear to my heart, one of the best Spanish tapas I've ever had was salt cod with scrambled eggs. The eggs were barely set, with chunks of flavourful yet delicate salt cod. Fabulous!

            1. From The New York Times website today, here's a recipe for brandade...

              http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/19/mag...

              1. I like the balcalhau recipe from The Nero Wolfe Cookbook, believe it or not.

                http://www.recipesource.com/ethnic/eu...

                1. Some of the recipes can be used interchangeably at your discretion, but look under "S" for salt cod recipes first.

                  Cod Recipes --> http://recipes.lovetoknow.com/wiki/Ca...

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Cheese Boy

                    My all time favorite salt cod recipe involves first soaking it. I like to leave it a little salty--usually soak in water overnight, then drain (i.e. no water changes). Put it in a saucepan with clean water and boil for a couple of minutes, then drain well. Meanwhile fry onions (cut into long slivers) in a very hot pan until they soften, carmelize, and get bits of dark brown. Add diced, deseeded hot pepper (habaneros are traditional) to taste. Fry them a minute, then add bacalao broken into chunks. Fry it, stirring constantly, until it too gets a bit crusty here and there. Add a large diced tomato (or two medium ones, diced) and fry until it softens. Traditionally eaten with roti bread (flat bread), also very good with rice. Yum.

                    1. re: flowergarden129

                      Oh that sounds good! I may have to try that soon, thanks for posting,

                  2. We make it by soaking for one day, changing the water halfway through, then baking with olives, capers, onion, potatoes and olive oil.

                    You can also rinse pieces of it and let it reconstitute directly in a pot of simmering beans.

                    1. A brandade-like casserole made with mashed potatoes, mashed celery root, sauteed onions, garlic, and strained goat-milk yogurt.

                      1. While brandade de morue is my favorite,it requires a lot of preparation.
                        Salt cod with ackee is a simpler Caribbean dish, much like salt cod and scrambled eggs. If you have ever wondered why ackee fruit in cans costs $7 this dish will will explain it perfectly. Here is one way to prepare it: http://eatjamaican.com/recipes/ackeea...
                        and another: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/dat...
                        (the second recipe is not boneless, and preferred by Jamaicans.)

                        1. it's a shame that so many recipes involving salt cod are fried.

                          my family is puertorrican, and one of our favorite dishes is bacalao con berenjena (salt cod with eggplant). this is how i make it: in a large skillet saute one whole onion, diced, with two minced garlic cloves in olive oil. cut eggplant into one-inch cubes (i also like to use sliced japanese eggplant) and add to the skillet, cooking until almost done. break the prepared cod into chunks and add, along with a diced tomato and diced pepper of any kind. once everything is cooked through and the tomatoes have broken down, season with coriander and black pepper, and top with chopped fresh cilantro or culantro.

                          my mother and i like it over steamed potatoes, yucca, and fried plantains. my dad likes it over rice (either white rice, or rice and pigeon peas), and my boyfriend likes to eat it cold in a pita with lettuce or sprouts.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: iamtheeiceworm

                            I know this is an old post but when I mentioned bacalao con berenjena to my Puerto Rican husband, his eyes lit up like it was Christmas. I guess I'll have to make it for him. Salt cod (or Pollock) is cheap and plentiful in my 'hood. thanks!

                            1. re: bushwickgirl

                              I ended up making a really delicious salt-cod stew. I brought portions of it into the teachers lounge for several lunches, and had to give out the recipe several times. Now I have a new ingredient in my arsenal. It seems that salt cod is used in a variety of international cuisines. Thanks for the feedback.

                              1. re: stuck in Hartford County

                                Another recipe for you, called by the French 'Morue Auvergnat', Essentially Brandade but not smoothed up. Large chunks of potato and cod baked after cooking. l love it and far more than morue as with so much less fat, it is not as heavy and can be a main dish not an appetizer.

                          2. A reply reminded me about another fave... Bacalao à la Vizcaina.

                            1. My favorite salt cod dish is still an old "down on the farm" recipe, Salt Cod Gravy (also known as Creamed Cod) over baked potatoes or biscuits. Freshen the fish as directed. Make a white sauce, seasoned as desired, add the cod and allow to heat through. Serve over potatoes, biscuits or toast. Great comfort food!

                              1. My Portugese in-laws make a great salt cod dish that is like a fritatta. Lightly poached salt cod that is broken into chunks, fried potato cubes, cooked onions, chopped parsley and garlic all mixed together,put in a pan and pour in a few beaten eggs. Then bake in the oven until it sets.
                                Great with a little hot sauce.