Bacalaitos Recipe

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Bacalaitos.
(10 bacalaitos)

1/4 lb. bacalao filet
3/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 tsp. salt
3/4 cup bacalao broth
1tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. crushed garlic
oil for frying

Today we can buy processed bacalao that is not “dry” and does not need to soak overnight or boil for hours and hours. Make sure you get the soft bacalao that has been deboned. Sometimes it comes in a wooden box or in platics bags. They have it at some Walmart stores and Fiesta Grocery stores and many others.

Rinse the bacalao and tear into smaller pieces. Boil in plenty of water for about 20 minutes or so. Discard water and add fresh water and boil again for another 20 minutes. Let it cool in the water and save the water. Remove the bacalao and drain in a metal drainer and wait for it to cool down (save the broth). Once cool to the touch, tear the pieces into smaller little tiny pieces and set it aside. If you hold it between your fingers it separates itself.

In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and garlic. Add the broth and whisk. The mixture should look like pancake batter. Then add the drained bacalao and whisk again. DO NOT use an electric appliance to stir this stuff because the bacalao will become like fiber and you will end up with a matty mess that will have to be thrown away. I’m speaking from experience here. The batter should look like thin pancake batter. If too thick just add a bit more broth and whisk. If you put too much broth add a bit of flour – just a bit.

Spoon the batter by ½ cup fulls into hot oil. The bacalaitos should be fried over high heat turning only once. They should be golden on both sides. Drain on paper towels before serving. If they are getting too brown too fast lowe heat a bit.

Any extra fish or batter may be refrigerated for a few days or frozen for later use. Remember that this recipe is only for about 10 bacalaitos – so multiply if you must.

Dinner & The Golden Globes Best Picture Nominee Review

With the Golden Globes on Sunday here is a quick breakdown of the best picture category of the diverse films nominated:

 Avatar
Lightstorm Entertainment; Twentieth Century Fox

The Movie: Avatar is perhaps one of the greatest technical films in cinematic history and has racked up the box office numbers to become the second highest grossing film in history. James Cameron proves that he is a true visionary by turning in a breathtaking film. Avatar is a contender, but due to script issues it could end up on the outside looking in.

The Dinner: Zoe Saldana, Avatar’s star, hails from Puerto Rico. Serve someCrunchy cod fritters) or empanadillas (turnovers with lobster, crab or beef) to sample some of the great cuisine.

Bacalaitos

Up In The Air
Paramount Pictures; Paramount Pictures

Its strange to say that Up in the Air is a dark horse, but with a unfamiliarly brilliant mix of comedy and drama Up in the Air could either be hailed as a film of the moment and steal the Golden Globe, or it could be slammed as opportunistic and be passed over. Either way it has solid performances and a script that will make you laugh and think at the same time.

The Dinner: Have a cheese tasting session with a good pairing wine to experience a bit of Wisconsin, George Clooney’s character’s home.

The Hurt Locker
Voltage Pictures; Summit Entertainment

The Movie: Directed by Katheryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker is an in depth look at one of the most intense jobs in the War on Terror: Bomb defusing. The Film features Jeremy Renner and Anthony Mackie in a very intense ride through a tour in Iraq. Look for The Hurt Locker to win if the Hollywood Foreign Press can get around the public perception of current war films.

The Dinner: While C-Rations would be fitting, try serving a skewer with either beef or lamb along with some hummus and flatbread.

Inglorious Bastards/Brad Pitt

Inglourious Basterds
The Weinstein Company/Universal Pictures/A Band Apart/Zehnte Babelsberg GmbH Production; The Weinstein Company/Universal Pictures

The Movie: Quentin Tarantino delivers a film that was in the making allegedly as long as Avatar, however with Basterds Tarantino capitalizes on his skills as a writer and creates a taut film that utilizes every character and actor fully. Its hard to say if the Hollywood Foreign Press will vote for this film over Hurt Locker, but its hard to count Tarantino out of anything when he’s crafted such a great film.

The Dinner: Try Knockwurst and saurkrat paired with a great German Beer like a Krombacher or Beck’s.

Precious: Based On The Novel Push By Sapphire
A Lee Daniels Entertainment / Smokewood Entertainment Group Production; Lionsgate

The Movie: Precious burst onto the scene at Sundance and between its presenters (Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry) and its strong box office run it isn’t hard to say Precious is a strong contender. With recent festival wins and strong performances from Mariah Carey, Moniqiue, and Paula Patton you can’t count out this indie film that could.

The Dinner: After a well crafted but tough film to watch, cut and serve a slice of New York Cheesecake to cheer your party up a bit.

Review by Michael Fusco, MCCN Movie Critic