• Salt cod fritters (Food Safari Water)Source: Food Safari Water

Bacalao is a salted and dried cod that is often sold in large fillets. It's probably the only dish Frank Camorra doesn't put any salt in (don't worry, the cod does all the work on that front). These fillets can be found in selected delis or grocers. Food Safari Water






Skill level

Average: 3.8 (12 votes)


  • 400 g bacalao (dried salt cod)
  • 600 ml milk
  • 75 g butter
  • ½ brown onion, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely diced
  • 2-3 anchovies in olive oil
  • 100 g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped chives
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 litre olive oil, for frying
  • sea salt and sweet paprika, to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Soaking time: 36 hr

Chilling time: 3 hr

Wash the bacalao 3 times in cold water, then in a deep container, cover with cold water and refrigerate for 36 hours, changing the water every 12 hours.

Drain the cod, then place in a saucepan with the milk over medium heat. Simmer gently for 10 minutes or until the cod is just cooked. Drain, reserving the milk and cod separately. When cool enough to handle, remove and discard any fish and bones from the cod and flake the flesh.

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, anchovies and a little of their oil. Sauté for 5-6 minutes or until the onions have softened. Add the flour and cook, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon for 2-3 minutes or until smooth. Gradually stir in the milk and beat until smooth. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring continuously until the mixture is thick and the flavour of the flour has been cooked out. Stir in the flaked cod, then remove from the heat. Break in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the chives and lemon zest. Pour the mixture into a plastic wrap lined tray, cover and refrigerate for 3 hours or until cold.

Heat the olive oil in a wok or deep-frying pan to 170°C.

Working in small batches, drop tablespoons of mixture into a bowl of extra flour for dusting. Gently toss to coat, then carefully lower the buñuelos into the hot oil, frying 6 at a time for 3 minutes or until golden and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel, then season lightly with sea salt and a dusting of paprika and serve hot.


Maeve O'Meara is back in Food Safari Water 7:30pm Tuesdays on SBS Food later on SBS On Demand. Visit the program page for recipes, videos and more.