It’s been a while since we brought you a recipe here on the blog. So, the publication of this recipe, Bacalhau à basca, or cod à la Biscayne, on the website Informe Brasil, run by Yanara Cardeal, is the perfect opportunity to bring back recipe articles from all over the world.
This article caught our attention for two reasons.
Firstly, because of how they described this cod recipe: “um prato requintado, gostoso e fácil de fazer” (a dish that is refined, tasty, and easy to make). This is even more meaningful coming from a country with a strong Portuguese influence, especially in a media outlet located in Salvador de Bahia, in the northeast, which has the strongest connections to the Portuguese mainland. This is important because, if there is any nation that has such a tight relationship with cod in its cuisine as the Basque Country, it’s Portugal. (By the way, Salvador de Bahia has many interesting connections with the Basques, such as this story of Basque whalers who were taken as teachers to hunt whales, or the port of arrival of Jesuit José de Anchieta, the most important missionary in Brazil, and the founder of Sâo Paulo.
Plus, we can’t forget that it was the Basques who managed to make cod one of the most important products of the sea for all of Europe. The explanation for this can be found in this article by Humberto Vieira and published way back in 2011, where we can find yet another Brazilian website, for the Di Parma Restaurant in Cuiabá, Mato Grosso discussing how, even in the year 1000, there were references throughout Europe to the purchase of Basque cod.
Secondly, once more, the part is being confused for the whole. The author starts her article by presenting the dish as typical of “The Basque Country in Spain.” We call it the Southern Basque Country. But cod is also a traditional dish north of the Pyrenees (we imagine she’d call it the “Basque Country in France”).
Honestly, it’s not easy for those abroad to understand that the Basque Country, even though it’s divided among two states, is one cultural unit. Even on the website we referred to earlier, the restaurant’s, starts off well enough, saying “But this is thanks to the Basques, a people that lived on both sides of the Western Pyrenees, between Spain and France” ends up declaring “An ancient food: the beginning of codfish with the Spanish and the Vikings.”
It’s not the fault of those who write about the Basques; it just means we Basques still have a long ways to go.
Informe Brasil – 16/5/2022 – Brazil
Bacalhau à basca: um prato requintado, gostoso e fácil de fazer
Hoje vamos compartilhar aqui a receita de bacalhau à basca, um prato típico do pais Basco na Espanha, que é uma excelente opção para um almoço ou jantar especial em família.