In our book we talk about eating foods that everyone else passes on, foods that are way more delicious and way less expensive than a center cut roast or white meat breasts. (Besides, remember what we said in our book about no new pricey breasts this year? You’re on a budget.)

Salt Cod is one of them.

Uncrinkle your nose. Now! Stop being a spoiled brat. We’re not asking you to eat raw tripe, for crying out loud– at least not yet.

You’ll save a bundle and enjoy one of the great foodie pleasures once you start cooking with salt cod. FYI: this delicacy is also known as bacalao (Spanish), bakaiļao (Basque), bacallà (Catalan), morue (French), baccalà (Italian), bacalhau (Portuguese), klippfisk/clipfish (Scandinavian), saltfiskur (Icelandic), bakalar (Croatian), and Saltfish (Caribbean). Got all that? Now be a bitch of the world and try it.

One of our closest friends grew up in the Azores, and the recipe below is an adaptation of her Salt Cod and Peppers.

You need to plan ahead to make this (always a challenge for us), so go out now and buy a box of Salt Cod. We like the kind with big thick fillets. The hardest part of the dish is that you have to soak the cod for 24 to 48 hours in a bath of cold water in the fridge, changing the water every 6-8 hours to get rid of the saltiness. Saveur Magazine online has a good primer on this, as well as a number of recipes on their site. Once soaked and cleaned, you’re ready to get to work. We use one large piece, 3/4 lb. pound, and break the fish up into big chunks for this recipe.

Preheat the oven to 350.

In a big skillet (we like to use our 13” All Clad) sauté the following in a generous amount of olive oil, until soft and translucent: one sliced onion, one minced garlic, two sliced red peppers. Season generously with hot red pepper flakes (we’re very heavy handed).

In a separate pot, cook  2 peeled and diced potatoes until just softened. Once the onion mix is softened, add the potatoes and cod and copious amounts of chopped fresh parsley. Gently mix all the ingredients together  and drizzle more olive oil across the top. Put into the oven for 35-45 minutes. Remove, add a little more oil, more fresh parsley, salt (careful), and pepper to taste.

What we love about this recipe are there are no rules. Add, subtract, ingredients to suit your taste buds.

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