The ConfraternityThe "Venerabile Confraternita del Bacalà alla Vicentina" (Venerable Confraternity of Vicenza-style Stockfish) was created in 1987 in Sandrigo (Vicenza) on the initiative of Michele Benetazzo.
Several primary objectives were laid out in their charter, such as for example to draft the “official” recipe for the preparation of Bacalà alla Vicentina and to award certificates to restaurateurs that are committed to serving the typical local dish with a certain constancy.
The recipeIngredients for 12:
1 kg dried stockfish
500 g onions
1 litre extravergin olive oil
½ litre fresh milk
plain white flour
50 g grated Grana Padano cheese
1 bunch chopped parsley
salt and pepper
Soak the well-beaten stockfish in cold water for 2 or 3 days, changing the water every 4 hours.
Peel off part of the skin. Split the fish lengthwise and remove the backbone and all the pin bones. Cut the fish into even squares.
Thinly slice the onions; fry in a pan with a glass of oil, add the desalted and boned anchovies cut into pieces; lastly, turn off the fire and add the chopped parsley.
Spoon some of the sautéed onion mixture into a terracotta or aluminium pot or oven dish and spread over the bottom.
Dip the stockfish pieces in the onion mixture, flour them, and then place the pieces next to each other in the pan.
Cover the fish with the remaining onion mixture, pour in the milk, add the grated cheese, salt and pepper.
Cover the fish pieces with the remaining oil.
Simmer over a very low heat for about 4 ½ hours. Rotate the pot every now and then, but do not stir.
It is only with experience that you will know when the fish is cooked to perfection, as each stockfish can differ in consistency. Bacalà alla Vicentina is excellent if allowed to rest for 12/24 hours before eating. Serve with polenta.