Orange, Salt Cod and Black Olive Salad

Rick Stein's Spanish salt cod, orange and black olive salad is the perfect blend of salty and sweet flavours. Delicious at any time of year, it is particularly enjoyable in the winter months when citrus fruits are at their best.

From the book

Rick Stein's Spain by
Rick Stein's Spain
Recreate authentic Spanish dishes at home
A guide to Spain's delicious and diverse cuisine
140 recipes from Rick Stein's hit BBC2 series


I can think of no dish more celebratory of the colours and fl avours of southern Spain than this. Oranges, salt cod and black olives all in a clean, fresh-tasting salad where the firm saltiness of the fish contrasts so satisfyingly with the refreshing sweetness of the oranges and the faint bitterness of the black olives. It’s a great winter salad because at this time the oranges are at their best.

Serves 4 as a starter


500g bacalao (salt cod)
3 large oranges
½ small red onion, thinly sliced into rings
24 good quality cured black olives, pitted
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 hard-boiled egg, peeled and roughly chopped into small pieces
For the dressing:
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
2 tbsp red or white wine vinegar
3 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice (from segmenting the oranges)
8 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper


Soak the bacalao in 3–4 litres of water in the fridge for 24–48 hours, depending on thickness. Change the water when it tastes salty, normally at least twice.

Put the piece of soaked salt cod into a pan of cold water, bring up to the boil, then cover and turn off the heat. Leave to sit for 10 minutes, then lift carefully onto a plate and leave to cool. Break into flakes, discarding the skin and any bones, cover and set to one side.

To segment the oranges, take a thin slice off the top and bottom of each one and stand it on a chopping board. Cutting from the top down to the bottom, carefully slice away all the skin and white pith.

Then holding the orange in one hand and a knife in the other, and working over a bowl to catch all the juices, slice either side of each segment, as close to the dividing membrane as you can, and drop each one onto a plate. Set aside with the cod.

Whisk the ingredients together for the dressing with ½ teaspoon of salt in a small bowl. Put the flaked salt cod, orange segments, onion rings and olives into a mixing bowl and pour over the dressing. Add the parsley and toss together gently. Leave for 5 minutes then adjust the seasoning to taste. Lift the salad out of the excess dressing onto serving plates, garnish with the hard-boiled egg and serve at room temperature.

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