Mule drivers’ style salt cod (Ajo arriero)

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 4 people

You'll need to begin this recipe 2 days ahead.

  • 400 gm salt cod fillet, soaked in water for 48 hours, water changed twice a day
  • 2 large pontiac potatoes, thinly sliced and cut into postage stamp-sized squares
  • 1 litre olive oil
  • 4 Piquillo peppers (see note)
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 large handful of flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • To serve: thickly sliced sourdough, toasted
01   Remove skin from salt cod and shred the meat off the bones, discarding skin and bones. Combine cod and potatoes in a large non-stick wok (see note) and pour over olive oil to cover. Bring the temperature of the oil up to a simmer quickly over medium heat, then reduce heat to low (about 90C), so oil gently bubbles, and cook for 30 minutes or until tender. Using the back of two wooden spoons, mash fish and potato together into tiny pieces. Transfer to a strainer and stand for 20 minutes.
02   Meanwhile, process peppers and garlic in a food processor, add eggs and combine.
03   Return cod mixture to a clean wok, pour over pepper mixture and add parsley. Cook over low heat, stirring, using two wooden spoons to mash the mixture, then beat for 5-10 minutes or until thick and creamy and season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve warm, thickly spread over freshly toasted bread.

Note Piquillo peppers are small beak-shaped peppers (Piquillo meaning 'little beaks' in Spanish), from the northern Navarra region, which have been smoked, hand-peeled and bottled in their own juices. They are available from select delicatessens. You may need to use a heat diffuser under your wok so it doesn't get too hot.

Recipe:

FRANK CAMORRA, MOVIDA

Photography:

WILLIAM MEPPEM

Styling:

EMMA KNOWLES AND MICHELE FINATO

FEATURED IN

Oct 2007

Oct 2007

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