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Bacalao is one of those ingredients that totally reminds me of home. In order to eat bacalao, it has to be rehydrated and desalinated. Simply, this means soaking it in water for at least 1 day, and changing out the water several times during that process. Also, this is a perfect dish for Lent, so put this on your list of Friday night meals. Serve with white rice or Colombian coconut rice , and avocado. Add the soaked bacalao and yucca or potato into a pot filled with cold water. Bring the pot to a boil and cook until the yucca or potato is fork tender. Drain the pot, and break the bacalao into large chunks. Cut the yucca into large chunks.
Easy Latin Recipes for the Home Cook
My father was captain on a fishing boat. Since he was a young man he travelled the Northern seas in search of haddock, coalfish, halibut, shrimps but above all cod. He travelled all the way to Greenland and could be away for as much as three months. When he came home we had a feast of the finest fish, even our cat fed on first-rate cod. My mother would also make large batches of fishcakes and fishballs, the northern equivalent to meatballs. Occasionally we ate cod that had been dried for two weeks, boknafisk, this time served with creamy carrots. In the summer cod was replaced with coalfish — the result of late evening fishing trips in the ever-bright Northern summer , and devoured in the early hours of the next day. How we ate our cod was quite limited.
This is particularly the case nowadays when most cod comes from fish farms. The cod, in fact, comes from Norway or Iceland. Bacalao was first enjoyed, centuries ago by the Basques, who, like the Vikings, had discovered the Americas long before Columbus. They also discovered the vast cod banks nearby. It popularity, originally, arose because it was a cheap way of providing Catholic countries with fish for Fridays and during Lent.