I got the idea for this dish from this wonderful arroz de bacalhau we had in the company of our dear friends, Luiz and Sávio, at a beach kiosk in Vitória while we were visiting back in early February. There the dish was served in those stunning and very authentic dark clay pots from Paneleiras de Goiabeiras The pots are a local, capixaba specialty in Espirito Santo.
We loved sitting in the cool shade, enjoying the sea breezes, drinking Brazilian beer, eating fried fish and this amazing rice while gazing at the beautiful Atlantic Ocean and catching up. Aahhh!
The rice cod dish on the beach looked spectacular because of the pot and they also displayed the broccoli at the top like a tiny green forest. Plus everything looks better with a golden beach and a deep blue sea in the background! I’m not that fussy at home, so I mixed all of the ingredients together. It still tasted just as good.
Arroz de Bacalhau com Brocolis AKA Salt Cod & Broccoli Flavored Rice
1 ½ lb salt cod
1 tsp black pepper corn
1 bay leaf
4 cups Basmati rice
½ white onion, chopped
1 bunch scallions (green and white parts), chopped
½ bunch Italian parsley, chopped
10 Spanish olives (Goya brand preferably), coarsely choppped
3 tomatoes, diced
½ red bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
3 crowns of broccoli, cut in small florets, steamed al dente
½ cup extra virgin olive oil or more
Preparing the cod:
Soak salt cold in ½ gallon cold water. Replace water 3 times in a 24h period to desalinate and re-hydrate the fish.
Drain cod. Add to a pan with enough water to just cover it. Add bay leaf and pepper corn. Bring to a boil. Reduce temperature to low and simmer for about 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let it cool completely in the cooking water. Drain and reserve ¾ cup of cooking water.
Remove and discard skin and bones from fish trying to preserve chunks as big as possible. They will continue break apart with cooking so do your best to keep them whole.
Cooking the rice:
Rinse rice thoroughly. Add 3 tbsp olive oil to a pan over high heat. Add rice and toss till coated with oil. Add 5 cups of water plus reserved cooking liquid form fish. Stir. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce temp to low. Cook until water is absorbed. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Remove from heat and keep pan covered
Assembling the dish:
Place 3 tbsp olive oil in a paella pan or large deep skillet on high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté till fragrant. Stir in tomato and pepper. Gently fold in cod fish, scallion, olives, broccoli and cook for about 5 minutes. Sprinkle freshly ground black pepper over fish. Carefully fold in rice. Drizzle with plenty of extra virgin olive oil and serve. If you like this dish check my other recipe:salt cod cod and chick peas
Learn more about the traditional clay pots: