Bacalhau com Natas - Cod Fish Casserole
This is one of those dishes that if you ask any portuguese person, they will most likely have tried it at least once in their life.
Bacalhau (salt cod fish) is a staple in the portuguese kitchen, and it can be quite expensive but it's readily available in any Portuguese community. The only way I can get it here is either by having my family mail it all the way from South Africa or I would have to go online and pay a crazy amount for shipping.
Recently my commissary started carrying cod fish, not the salted kind, but it's the same thing. Usually when it's salted you have to soak it for 24 hours before cooking but when it's just frozen you can skip that part.
So this past week I bought some to make this wonderful cod fish in a cream sauce with potatoes and onions and garlic and OH.MY.GOODNESS. Love it!
It's also my kids favorite way to eat fish.
4 cod fish fillets (btw, you can substitute any other fish if you prefer)
4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 medium onions, sliced thinly (or 1 large)
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
salt and pepper
shredded carrots....about 1/4 cup
3 green onions, thinly sliced
For the cream sauce:
2 cups of milk
1 cup of heavy cream
2 tablespoons of butter
4 tablespoons flour
Cook the potatoes in boiling water until tender, transfer to an oven proof dish. Set aside. In another pot, cook the fish until done, drain and shred the cod fish.
In a skillet, add the olive oil, onions,
carrots, green onions
and salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes until veggies are tender, add the cod fish and check the seasonings. (If you're using salt cod you don't need to add any extra salt)
In separate pot, mix the milk, cream, butter and flour and using a wire whisk, cook over medium heat until thick. If need be use an immersion blender to get all the lumps out.
Add the cod fish mixture to the potatoes and stir everything together.
Now pour the cream sauce over the mixture
and pop into a 375º oven for about 20 minutes or until it's hot and bubbly. (Another variation is to add some bread crumbs to the top before popping in the oven).