Dried and salted cod fish is very popular and can be cooked in many different ways. It is traditionally eaten on the 25th March, when the Day of our Lady is celebrated. It is usually fried and is accompanied by the Greek garlic sauce (skordalia).
Ingredients 1 kilo cod fish (salted, fresh or frozen) 1 glass flour all purpose 1 glass beer 2 teaspoonfuls baking powder ½ teaspoonful salt 1 – 2 cups extra flour Oil for frying
If you use salted cod, you have to cut it in pieces and immerse it in water to rehydrate and desalinate it. You should change the water about 4 – 5 times a day and keep doing it for 2 – 3 days, otherwise the cod will be too salty to eat. It is also a good idea to stand the pieces of cod on a rack, so that the fish doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl where the salt settles. When the cod is ready, take it out of the water and squeeze it to remove as much water as possible. Remove the bones with tweezers. If you buy a filet of cod, there won’t be as many bones. It is also very easy to remove the skin, but lifting one corner and then pulling the skin off or with the aid of a sharp knife.
If you wish, you can use fresh or even frozen cod fish, and carry on with the recipe. Again you can buy filet of cod or ask your fishmonger to filet the fresh cod for you.
Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add the beer slowly, beating the whole time with an egg beater, until you have a smooth batter. It shouldn’t be either too runny or too stiff.
Put about 1 cup of flour in a plate. Take a piece of cod fish and put it in the flour, turning it over so that it is properly covered. This will help the batter to stick better on the fish. Shake off the excess flour and now dip it in the batter, making sure that the piece of fish is completely covered. In the meantime, put some oil in a frying pan and heat it up. When it is hot, put the pieces of fish in the pan. Don’t crowd it. Reduce the heat to medium (3 or 4 out of 6) so that the fish cooks inside without burning outside. You will see that some pieces are thicker than others therefore they need different cooking times. However you should never overcook fish, because it becomes dry and tasteless. The thicker pieces need about 3 – 4 minutes on each side. The thinner pieces don’t need more than 2 minutes per side.
Place the fried pieces of cod on absorbent paper. Serve with garlic sauce and a large green salad. If you wish you can add french fries.