Panamanian Style Bacalao

Bacalao is salt cod, which is just a way of preserving the fish. The cod needs to be soaked for 24 hours before preparing the recipe.

Panamanian Style Bacalao

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 1 fillet salt cod
  • big pinch of saffron
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large Spanish onion, cut in half, and sliced into thick slices
  • 1 large red bell pepper, sliced
  • 6 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • 2 cups strained tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon Habanero hot sauce
  • parsley, chopped
  • Sliced Manzanilla olives
  • capers


Soak the cod for 24 hours.

Add saffron to hot water and set aside.

Boil the potatoes until cooked through and tender, but still firm. Drain and set aside.

Add olive oil to a large pot. Saute onions for about 5 minutes. Add bell pepper and saute another 5 minutes. Add garlic, red pepper flakes, cumin, and bay leaves. Cook another 5 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes, water, and saffron, hot sauce, and cod. Cover and cook until the cod starts to fall apart in chunks, about 20 minutes. Taste and add salt and/or pepper accordingly. Garnish with sliced olives and capers.

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