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Mexican Bacalao Navideño (Dried Salted Cod)

Six to eight servings

This dried Cod delicious dish is prepared traditionally in Mexico for the Christmas holiday!

The Spanish made the most of the New World ingredients they found in Mexico, using potatoes, tomatoes and chiles in this dish, in addition to the olives they imported from Europe and the salted, dried cod that accompanied them on ocean voyages.

Bacalao is the Spanish word for a slab of boneless, skinless dried salt cod. The filets — long, snowy looking things — pop up in all the Mexico City grocery stores and markets during Christmas time.

The dried cod piled up in the markets at this time of year undergoes an almost magical and delicious culinary transformation from a rather unappetizing looking ingredient to an outstanding dish with an inspired combination of flavors.


2 lbs. dried Salted Cod (Bacalao) Don’t buy the flat board-like sheets. Use the thicker more expensive filet.

1Chile Ancho (optional)

2 lbs. fresh tomatoes

1/2 Cup Olive Oil

1large Onion, finely chopped

3 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped

1 Bay Leaf

1 pinch Ground Cinnamon

1 pinch fresh ground pepper

1 (220 g) jar roasted red peppers

1/2 Cup sliced blanched almond