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Bacalhau à Brás
Small plate
Over 2 hours

This bacalhau à brás recipe recipe offers some serious Portugese comfort food flavour, with salt cod, crispy fried potatoes, and olives scrambled with eggs to create a gloriously hearty dish.

Recipe courtesy of
  • 120g salted cod* (desalted)
  • 200g potatoes, cut into matchsticks
  • 100g white onions, sliced
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 50g green or black olives, sliced
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1/2 bunch chives, chopped
  • Salt
  • Fresh cracked black pepper

*If you cannot find salted cod in your regular shop you can use the following method to create your own, using fresh cod or alternatively any other white fish like haddock, hake or pollock:

  • 500g cod fillet
  • 600g sea salt
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  1. Rehydrate the bacalhau (salted cod) for 48 hours by soaking in cold water and changing the water every 12 hours.
  2. Preheat a deep-fryer or deep pan of oil until 150°C.
  3. Peel the potatoes then cut them into slices with the help of a mandoline. Cut the slices into matchsticks, then wash under cold water in order to remove the starch. Dry the potatoes with a cloth. 
  4. Deep-fry until golden and crispy, then drain on a tray lined with plenty of kitchen roll.
  5. Poach the cod in simmering water for 5 minutes, then remove from water and let it cool down slightly. Flake the fish, removing the bones and skins.
  6. Heat the olive oil in a pan and add the onions. Season with salt and cook them slowly until they are very tender.
  7. Once tender, add the cod and olives and mix well. Add the potatoes and stir until they’re warmed through.
  8. Add the beaten eggs and fold well using the residual heat from the pan. It should be creamy.
  9. Add the salt and pepper to season, sprinkle with chives and serve.

Homemade Salt Cod:

  1. Wash and pat dry the fillet of your chosen fish. Cover a tray with a layer of sea salt.
  2. Lay the fish on top, cover with the remaining salt and refrigerate for 36 hours.
  3. Once cured, the fish need to be soaked in water for 24 hours to remove the excess salt.

The Pass was created to help the many people now struggling to feed themselves and their families as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. If you like or use this recipe, please consider making a small donation to Hospitality Action to help those whose livelihoods have all but disappeared.

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