Baccala is a very traditional part of one of the many fishes eaten at Christmas and usually on Christmas Eve. Growing up I don’t ever remember a Christmas when we didn’t have Baccala in some form. We still continue this tradition in our house. Charlie prepares is several different ways. I’m not a fan of Baccala, but at Christmas it is delicious.
- 1 lb baccala (salt cod)
- 1 onion – quartered
- 2 garlic cloves – sliced
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ lb yukon gold potatoes – peeled and quartered
- extra oil – for drizzling
- salt and freshly ground black pepper – to taste
- Cut the cod into large pieces and put in a large bowl adding enough water to cover.
- Place in the refrigerator and let it soak for about 48 hours, changing the water a few times a day.
- In a saucepan, combine 2 quarts of water, the onion and the garlic.
- Bring to a boil, add the drained cod and cover. After a few minutes, remove from the heat and allow the fish to just rest in the water until it is supple enough to be pulled apart using 2 forks – about 12. to 15 minutes. Use a spider (large slotted flat spoon) to carefully remove the cod to another dish. Reserve the water.
- When the cod is cool enough to handle, carefully pick out the bones and remove the skin. Using a fork, flake the fish.
- Bring the reserved water back to a boil and add the potatoes. Cook until very tender. Drain.
- Transfer the potatoes to a large bowl and mash with a fork adding the olive oil while mashing until smooth and creamy.
- Taste for salt and pepper being very careful because the fish is salty.
- Mix in the flaked cod. Place on plates and drizzle with a little extra olive oil just as you serve.
On this the Eve of Christmas, I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.
I hope you enjoy a day surrounded by those your love.