Recipe Baccalà Alla Vicentina

Baccalà alla Vicentina con Polenta – Diego CC BY 2.0


  • 2 lbs. dried cod
  • 1 lb. onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 oz. olive oil
  • 8 anchovy fillets
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 2 tbs. flour and 2 tbs. grated Parmigiano mixed together
  • 1 pint milk
  • salt
  • pepper

How to make Baccalà alla Vicentina:

Soften the dried cod by beating it with a mallet, and then place it in water for at least three days. When ready, prepare in the following way: make a soffritto with the onions and garlic browned in 2 tbs. Olive oil. Add the anchovies and parsley and cook on low flame for five more mins. Remove from heat and set aside.

Split open the cod and dust it with flour and Parmigiano, then spread 1/2 of the soffritto on it. Fold the fish closed and cut the cod across into pieces about 2-in. long. Roll the pieces of cod in the rest of the flour and cheese, then place them in a baking dish, preferably made of terracotta.

Sprinkle the rest of the soffritto over the top, drizzle with remaining oil, and cover with milk. Cover the pot and cook over low heat for 3 hours, shaking the dish occasionally.

Baccala alla Vicentina is better if left to sit for a day after cooking and then re-heated.


In Veneto, dried cod is called salt cod (Baccalà), thus creating some confusion about what type of fish to use. In this recipe, you must use dried cod.

The recipe is handed down from generation to generation and almost every family uses one or more small variations.

Dried cod must be of excellent quality, the best is considered the one called “Ragno” which comes from Lofoten Islands in Norway.

It must be pounded, then soaked in running water for three days in order to soften, then cleaned, floured, and cooked over very low heat with plenty of onion in an earthenware pot, covered with milk and oil in equal quantities; it is served on a bed of yellow polenta.

To accompany it, Tocai Rosso di Barbarano, Vespaiolo di Breganze, and Garganega are particularly recommended.

Regional recipe from Veneto.

Enrico Massetti was born in Milan, Italy.
Now he lives in Washington, DC, USA.
Still, he regularly visits his hometown
and enjoys going around all the places in his home country
especially those he can reach by public transportation.

Enrico loves writing guide books on travel in Italy
to help his friends that go to Italy to visit
and enjoy his old home country.
He also publishes books on the Argentine tango dance.

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