Venetian-style baccalà mantecato is a delicate and refined typical recipe: the codfish is cooked and reduced to a cream with plenty of oil, garlic, and parsley and then served with white polenta or polenta croutons.
Baccalà mantecato is prepared with stoccafisso, which is an arctic cod of Norwegian origin that is preserved by cold air drying; in fact, the name stoccafisso comes from the Norwegian stokkfisk, stick fish.
In the Veneto area, stockfish is commonly called baccalà, hence the name of the recipe.
Stoccafisso, which is often sold whole, requires prolonged soaking in cold, running water before it can be cooked and eaten.
- 28 oz (800 grams) Soaked stockfish
- 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups of whole milk
- Parsley to taste
- 1 clove of garlic
- Salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
To prepare Venetian-style salt cod, start by soaking the stockfish for at least 24 hours in running water, letting it run a trickle, or changing the soaking often.
Then cut it into pieces.
After this time has elapsed place it in a saucepan covering it with cold water and milk, salt lightly and bring to a boil, skimming occasionally.
Cook the cod for about 20 minutes, until it is well cooked and tender (if necessary leave it 10 minutes longer).
Drain the cod and clean it, removing the bones and skin, then cut it into small pieces and place in a bowl.
With a wooden spoon (or in a planetary mixer), vigorously mix the codfish, adding the oil in a drizzle, as in preparing a mayonnaise.
You will get a compact and homogeneous, glossy-looking cream with a few pieces still whole.
Season with salt and pepper and add chopped parsley and garlic.
We recommend consuming the Venetian-style baccalà mantecato as soon as it is ready, but if you wish you can store it in the refrigerator, sealed in an airtight container, for up to a day.
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