FRIED SALT COD
0 min Makes 8 hors d'oeuvre servings. Main Ingredient: SALT*COD* Cuisine: ItalianCooking: Active time: 30 min Start to finish: 3 days (includes soaking) Start to finish: 1 day min
1 lb center-cut skinless boneless salt cod, rinsed well
1 qt vegetable oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons water
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
Accompaniment: lemon wedges
Special equipment: a deep-fat thermometer
Nutrition Factsper serving of Makes 8 hors d'oeuvre servings.
Step 1Soak cod in a large bowl with water to cover by 2 inches, chilled, changing water 3 times a day, 1 to 3 days (see cooks\' note, below). Chill cod until ready to use.
Step 2Heat vegetable oil in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over moderate heat until it registers 385 to 390°F on thermometer.
Step 3While oil is heating, whisk together flour, salt, olive oil, water, and parsley in a bowl. Drain cod and pat dry, then cut into 3- by 1/2-inch strips. Working in batches of 4, coat strips in batter, then transfer to oil with tongs and fry, turning, until golden, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet to drain. (Return oil to 385 to 390°F between batches.)
Step 4Sprinkle with sea salt and serve immediately.
Step 5Cooks\' notes:
Step 6• Brands of cod differ in their degree of saltiness: A less salty one may need only 1 day of soaking, while another could require up to 3. To test it, simply taste a small piece after 1 day; you want it to be pleasantly salty but not overwhelming.
Step 7• If your sea salt is very coarse, lightly crush it with a mortar and pestle or the side of a large heavy knife.