Monday, September 10, 2012

Pastéis de bacalhau

Oh dear, Portuguese salted cod fishcakes (pastéis de bacalhau) are just too addictive. They are called Bolinhos de bacalhau in Northern Portugal and Brazil. Try this recipe at your own peril. They are very easy to make.

But you will need salted cod or similar fish.

Salted cod:

Or black Pollock (called 'saithe' in Britain; (zwarte) koolvis in Dutch); cheaper than cod):

Soak the salted cod for 24 hours and change the water a couple of times to get rid of most of the salt.

Boil for 15 minutes. Take off the skin and remove fish bones. To soften the cod you can boil the cod in milk for another 10 to 15 minutes.

Shred the cod in small pieces by hand. This is somewhat time consuming but necessary.

The other ingredients are: potatoes, onion, garlic, egg, some black pepper and fresh coriander leaf and/or parsley.

For one package of salted cod (see photo) you need about 4 potatoes. Boil and mash.

Cut the onion, garlic and coriander (and/or parsley) in small pieces.

Mix everything together adding two eggs. Add some milk if the mixture is too dry. Eggs will prevent the cakes from falling apart when you fry them.

Use two spoons to make bite sized fish cakes.

Keep them in the fridge for at least a couple of hours before frying. This, again, will prevent the cakes from falling apart.

Fry the cakes in hot oil (a couple of minutes will do).

Serve with Portuguese tomato rice or eat the pastéis de bacalhau as a snack.

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