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Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for baccala by Neil Perry from Melbourne restaurant Rosetta.

By Neil Perry & Brendan Sheldrick
  • Serves 4
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 30 mins cooking plus soaking, cooling

“Salt cod is used all over Europe, but some of the very best salt cod ideas come from Italy,” says Neil Perry. You’ll need to begin this recipe two days ahead to soak the cod.


  • 500 gm salt cod
  • 100 gm dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Spanish onions, thinly sliced
  • 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 1 tsp dried chilli
  • 1 bunch cavolo nero, thinly sliced
  • 600 gm canned whole tomatoes
  • 100 ml extra-virgin olive oil


  • 1
    Soak salt cod in three changes of water in the refrigerator to remove salt (48 hours), then drain.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, drain chickpeas and cook in a saucepan of boiling water until tender (30-40 minutes). Set aside.
  • 3
    Bring celery, onion, carrot, bay leaf, peppercorns and 3 litres water to the boil in a large saucepan, add salt cod and simmer over medium heat until tender (40 minutes). Drain (discard vegetables), cool, break salt cod into large chunks and set aside.
  • 4
    Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat, add onion and stir occasionally until tender (20 minutes). Add garlic, anchovies and chilli and cook until anchovies dissolve (2 minutes). Add cavolo nero and cook until wilted (2 minutes), then add 250ml water and simmer until evaporated (10 minutes). Add tomatoes and another 250ml water, or enough to make a soupy consistency, and simmer until cavolo nero is tender (10 minutes). Add salt cod and chickpeas and serve hot.


This recipe is from the March 2013 issue of .
Drink Suggestion: 2010 Argiolas “Is Argiolas” Vermentino, Sardinia. Drink suggestion by David Lawler

  • Author: Neil Perry & Brendan Sheldrick