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Bacalhau com broa – Portuguese Codfish with cornbread: recipe

3. Bacalhau com Broa

Bread is an essential ingredient in the Portuguese food tradition. As such, we couldn’t help it but develop some dishes that blend our staple bread and our much beloved salted cod, bacalhau

There are several recipes featuring bread and cod: bacalhau à brásaçorda de bacalhau, tiborna de bacalhau, or the lovely gratin bacalhau espiritual.

Today, we explore an incredible oven-baked recipe that features salted cod with a crust made with broa, that is, Portuguese cornbread. This is a typical recipe from the northern Minho region, where historically corn has been used even more than wheat, normally associated with the southern provinces of Portugal. You can prepare Bacalhau com Broa with individual pieces of cod loin baked in the oven or as a one-tray casserole. To inspire you to follow a truly easy recipe, we go for the latter option.


Ingredients for 4 servings:

500g desalted codfish (buy already desalted codfish and follow these tips)

400g potatoes

250g cornbread

100ml olive oil

1 onion

3 garlic cloves

2 eggs

Salt and pepper to taste


Recipe directions: 

Place the pieces of cod in a pot with abundant water and boil for about 15 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the water and allow to cool down. When you can handle the fish, shred it with your hands carefully removing skin and bones. 

Using two separate pans, boil the eggs and the peeled potatoes in salted water. Once the potatoes are soft, mash them with a potato masher and add more salt and pepper to taste.

Heat up the olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the sliced onions and garlic until transparent. Remove the onions and garlic from the oil, and keep the oil for later.

In a separate bowl, make coarse bread crumbs with cornbread using your hands. 

Now, we are ready to assemble our casserole! In an oven-safe dish place the fried onions and garlic at the bottom (save the olive oil to finish the casserole). Cover with an even layer of mashed potatoes. Add in the sliced boiled eggs and the shredded cod, and top up with cornbread crumbs. Sprinkle the leftover olive oil all over the corn crumbs to make them crispy.

Bake in a preheated oven at 200ºC for about 15 minutes, or until the cornbread looks golden. What a treat!


a pizza sitting on top of a plate of food


Feed your curiosity on Portuguese food culture:

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Foods you didn’t know were Portuguese

The national dish of Portugal (it’s not codfish…)

10 Portuguese culinary books


Discover more easy recipes on our blog:

Bacalhau à Brás – Portuguese Codfish Recipe

Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato (clams at Bulhão Pato style)

Açorda de camarão (shrimps Açorda)

Roasted lamb

Chicken soup

Easter bread

Bread pudding with Port wine


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