Salt cod, scrambled eggs, fried potato matchsticks and marinated olives, this traditional Portuguese dish is the ultimate comfort food


  • 500g salt cod, sourced with sustainability in mind

  • 1 bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 2 banana shallots

  • 1 lemon

  • 3 onions

  • olive oil

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • 10 quality black olives, stones in

  • 10 quality green olives, stones in

  • 1 pinch of dried chilli flakes

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • extra virgin olive oil

  • 500g Maris piper potatoes

  • 1.2 litres vegetable oil

  • 6 large free-range eggs

  • sea salt


  • 1.

    Place the salt cod in a large bowl and cover completely with cold water. Leave to soak for at least 12 hours, draining and covering with fresh water every few hours.

  • 2.

    When you’re ready to cook, pick the parsley leaves and set aside, then finely slice the stalks. Peel and finely slice the shallots into rounds. Using a speed peeler, peel away strips of lemon zest. Half-fill a large pan with boiling water, place over a high heat and bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Drain and add the salt cod, then add the parsley stalks, shallots and lemon peel. Poach for around 20 minutes, or until the cod starts to soften and flake apart.

  • 3.

    Meanwhile, peel and finely slice the onions, then add to a large, wide pan over a medium heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with pepper and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden and starting to caramelise, stirring regularly.

  • 4.

    Meanwhile, crush the olives, pull out and discard the stones, then place the flesh into a medium bowl. Roughly chop the parsley leaves and add half to the bowl along with the chilli flakes, vinegar and 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Mix well, then set aside.

  • 5.

    Using a slotted spoon, remove the salt cod to a plate. Pick out any bones, then flake the flesh into the onion pan along with a good splash of the poaching liquid. Break it up with a wooden spoon, then cook for a further 10 minutes over a low heat, or until the fish is soft and flaking apart, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.

  • 6.

    Peel, then finely slice the potatoes into matchsticks using a mandolin (use the guard!) or a sharp knife. Place a medium pan over a high heat, pour in the oil and allow to heat up. To test if the oil is hot enough, drop a piece of potato into the pan – if the potato floats to the surface, sizzles and turns golden, it’s about right. Using a slotted spoon, lower the potato matchsticks into the hot oil (you’ll need to do this in batches) and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, or until very lightly golden, but not cooked through. Transfer to a double layer of kitchen paper to drain.

  • 7.

    Return the cod mixture to a medium heat, then stir in most of the remaining chopped parsley. Beat the eggs, pour them into the pan, then gently stir. Fold in three-quarters of the potato matchsticks and take the pan off the heat – the eggs will continue to cook in the pan, so make sure you don’t overheat them too much at this stage.

  • 8.

    Return the remaining potato matchsticks to the hot oil, then fry for a further 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden and cooked through. Transfer to a double layer of kitchen paper to drain and season with salt. Transfer the bacalhau to a serving dish and top with the crispy potato fries. Using a slotted spoon, spoon over the marinated olives, sprinkle the remaining chopped parsley on top, then serve with a green salad and a cold glass of dry white wine.

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (6 servings)

  • Energy 2228kj
  • Fat Total 211g
  • Saturated Fat 16g
  • Protein 61g
  • Carbohydrate 27g
  • Sugar 5g
  • Sodium 6042mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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