Culinary Tours in Portugal: Salt Cod Recipe with Wine Pairing

November 20, 2020  |  By Liz SanFilippo Hall
Filed Under

Codfish is highly popular everywhere in Portugal, considering the country has over 1,000 ways to prepare the fish (and let’s not even talk about how many ways there are to prepare it in Italy and Spain, too — save that for a cooking class!). But what wines should you drink with this traditional ingredient, where it’s boiled, dried, fried, baked, and oh so much more?

Check out another wonderful Portuguese recipe for salt cod.

Portuguese wine grapes on a culinary tour of PortugalCod fish has a very strong flavor, so it needs a wine that can complement and stand up to it. When it’s salt cod you’re serving as ‘bacalhau à brás’ — one of the most popular ways — you have a little bit more leeway in what you can pair with it, as the scrambled eggs and potatoes temper the flavors of the fish.

See our Portugal food and wine tours.

We’ve talked about port wines before, but those are best left for sweet dishes, including desserts. Rather, stick to other Portuguese wines, such as whites that are full-bodied, as well as light to medium reds. More specifically, reds made with Trincadeira grapes work well; the acidity of the grapes will help balance the flavors of the salted cod. The wine estate of Esporão, which you visit during our Delectable Portugal in Historic Evora cooking vacation, also makes a number of wines that are well suited to cod dishes.

So now that you know what to pair that salted cod dish, how do you make it? Sofia, the hostess of our Portugal cooking vacation, shares a traditional recipe.

Check out Sofia’s recipe for a traditional Portuguese “tomatada.”

Bacalhau à brás on a culinary tour of Portugal

Bacalhau à Brás

Serves 4 people
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Cook method: Fry


  • 1 dried codfish (about 200 grams), soaked
  • 1 potato (per person)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 large onions
  • Parsley
  • Olive Oil
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Sea Salt

Cook with Sofia in Evora on a 4- or 6-night culinary vacation.

Toast with Portuguese wine Instructions: 
1. Take the dried codfish (already soaked) and slice into fingers.

2. Peel the onions and then cut them into half-moon slice. Fry the onions in about 4 tablespoons of olive oil until they become translucent.

3. Add the sliced cod to the pan, and fry it on a low temperature.

4. Meanwhile, thinly cut the potatoes so they’re like toothpicks. Fry these as well in vegetable oil.

5. Add the potatoes in with the cod fish.

6. While the potatoes cook with the fish, beat the eggs. To the eggs, add sliced parsley, and then add this egg mixture into the big frying pan. Continue to cook until the eggs are cooked and scrambled.

7. Add some olives and serve immediately.

8. You can serve the dish accompanied by salad.

Learn more about wine pairings and Portuguese dishes with a trip to our recently revamped Delectable Portugal in Historic Evora cooking vacation, and discover why we think Evora is one of Europe’s best destinations!

If you’re looking for more recipes featuring salt cod, check out our Roman recipe for filetti di baccalà, Spanish salt cod fritters, and Italian baccalà with tomato sauce.

By Liz Hall

Sign up to receive our newsletter, which includes travel tips, recipes, promotions, and information on our best cooking tours.

Find more photos, videos, food facts, and travel stories from The International Kitchen on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube.

Print This Page

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *