A healthy Spanish salad from José Pizarro's Seasonal Spanish Food. "This salt cod salad is called esqueixada in Catalan, and literally means "shredded". You hardly soak the cod at all for this salad, so it is imperative that you use the best quality fish you can find. The marjoram is my addition; in Catalunya you won't find herbs being used like this. You can eat the salad on its own, or as an accompaniment to grilled fish."
About 1-1/2 lb. salt cod
1/2 small red onion, diced
1 spring onion, chopped
3 cups flavourful tomatoes, chopped and seeds removed
1/4 green pepper, diced
1/4 red pepper, diced
20 Aragón or Kalamata black olives, pitted and chopped
5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
2 marjoram sprigs, leaves stripped
Step 1: Remove the skin and the bones from the salt cod. Break the flesh into pieces with your fingers, not a knife; you don't want straight edges, just roughly torn bits. Put the salt cod into cold water for 40 minutes, changing the water three or four times. You want the fish to be a bit salty still.
Step 2: Squeeze the salt cod between your hands to remove all the water. Then, to be doubly sure, pat it dry between a couple of sheets of kitchen paper.
Step 3: Mix all the ingredients together and get the salad is ready. That's it — simplicity itself. If you want to make the salad look even more attractive, use a 4" cookie cutter and fill it with the salt cod. Carefully remove the cutter, sprinkle a few extra marjoram leaves over the top, and finish with a drizzle of olive oil.
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Reprinted with permission from José Pizarro's Seasonal Spanish Food (2012 Kyle Books).