Salad of salt cod, frisée and croutons with bacon vinaigrette

Salad of salt cod, frisée and croutons with bacon vinaigrette

By
From
Mr Wilkinson's Simply Dressed Salads
Serves
4
Photographer
Jacqui Melville

You really should read Mark Kurlansky’s books on the subjects of both salt and cod – brilliantly written and so interesting. That said, there are different-quality versions of salt cod. For this dish please grab the expensive whole salted fillet; generally you can get them boned.

Bear in mind you will need to soak the salt cod for a day before starting this recipe.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
300g salt cod fillet, (this will yield 200–250 g of fish once cooked)
1 white onion, roughly chopped
1 fresh bay leaf
1 litre milk
2 slices bread
canola oil, for drizzling
2 large heads frisee, outer leaves removed, then washed and torn, (see glossary)
20 chives, washed and chopped
1 small handful chervil, picked and washed
1 small handful flat-leaf parsley, washed
2 small french shallots, sliced
80g pecorino or parmesan, grated

Bacon vinaigrette

Quantity Ingredient
100g bacon or pancetta, finely chopped
2 french shallots, finely diced
30ml whiskey
40ml sherry vinegar
4 drops tabasco, or other spicy chilli sauce
6 drops worcestershire sauce

Method

  1. Soak the cod in a bowl of cold water for 24 hours, changing the water three times.
  2. Next day, rinse the cod under fresh cold water and place in a large pot. Add the onion, bay leaf and milk, then top with water until the fish is fully submerged. Place over a medium heat and gently bring to a simmer. Let simmer for 4–5 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the cod sit. You just want to poach it gently.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200ºC. Tear the bread into small chunks and drizzle with a little canola oil. Place on a baking tray and bake for 5–7 minutes, or until golden, but still soft in the middle. Remove your croutons from the oven and set aside.
  4. Place the frisée, herbs and shallot in a mixing bowl and set aside.
  5. To make the dressing, place a frying pan over a high heat. Add the bacon and toss for a few minutes, until it turns brown and is cooked. Add the shallot and cook for another 2 minutes. Now add the whiskey and bubble away until reduced to a glaze. Stir in the vinegar and 100 ml water, then leave to cook out for 5 minutes, or until the liquid has a vinaigrette consistency. Add the Tabasco and worcestershire sauce and set aside.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the cod from the poaching liquid onto a tray. Flake all the meat into the salad, removing any bones and skin. Add your toasted croutons.
  7. Dress the salad with some warm bacon vinaigrette. Place in a serving bowl, add a little more dressing, then scatter with pecorino and serve.
Tags:
salad
salads
vegetables
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