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Salade de morue salée, recette familiale de Stefano Faita.
Main dishes

Insalata di baccalà (Salt cod salad)

Salade de morue salée, recette familiale de Stefano Faita.

This ultra-traditional salad comes straight out of my mom Elena’s Christmas memories. For many years, Catholic traditions required to refrain from eating meat on Christmas Eve. And so, people had to find something else to tuck into on that special occasion. Salted cod was an ingredient available year-round, something that was easy to preserve and very versatile. So, it’s no wonder that baccalà became the go-to dish for Christmas Eve across Italy, from the seashore to the Alps. You’ll need to factor in a little bit of time for soaking, but otherwise this fresh and colourful version of the classic will come together in no time. This is one tradition that definitely deserves to be shared and put back under the spotlight.

Preparation 35 min
Cooking time 7 - 10 min
Portions 4-6

Plan for 36 hours of desalination. The salad can be prepared the day before.



  1. In a large bowl, desalinate the fish by soaking the pieces of cod in cold water. Keep in the refrigerator for 36 hours, changing the water every 6 to 8 hours. Drain well.
  2. In a large pot, cover the pieces of desalinated cod with cold water. Cover and cook over medium heat for 7 to 10 minutes, or until the fish is tender. Set aside to cool.
  3. Flake the cooked cod in a large bowl and add the garlic, the marinated peppers, anchovy filets, olives, parsley, and fennel slices. Toss well to combine.
  4. Add the lemon juice and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix thoroughly. *Careful not to over-salt, as the anchovy filets and olive are already salty.