Spiritual Cod

Cooks’ Notes:
An adaptation of the original recipe, Countess Almeida Araújo bought in Paris in 1947, for 50 contos from a French restaurant to hold a banquet at the Queluz Palace.

Serve: 10 peoplePreparação:40 minutesConfecção:40 minutes



Carrots – 4 medium ones
Cod fillets – 5
Garlic – 5 cloves
Onion – 3
salt – q.s.
Hard bread – 750 kg
Milk – q.b
Grated cheese – optional (not part of the original recipe)


Butter – 100g
Flour – 90g
Milk – 1L
Nutmeg – q.s.
Salt and pepper – q.s.

Cooking Steps


  1. Start by melting the butter in a pan.
  2. Sift and add the flour and mix with a whisk, letting it cook for a few seconds.
  3. Add the milk little by little, mixing constantly to avoid lumps. Stir until it thickens.
  4. Let it cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. When the béchamel sauce is at the desired consistency, season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
  6. Let it cook for a few more seconds and it’s ready. Be careful not to catch the bottom.


  1. Cook the cod fillets in hot milk (never boil). Then remove the skins and bones, shred and reserve the cod and milk.
  2. Break the bread into pieces and soak them in the milk in which the cod was cooked.
  3. Cut the onions into slices, grate the carrots and chop the garlic cloves.
  4. In a pan, heat the oil and sauté the onions until golden.
  5. Add the carrots and when they start to turn white add the chopped garlic.
  6. Add the well-drained bread, cod and part of the béchamel sauce, until it has a creamy but firm texture.
  7. Adjust the seasoning and mix.
  8. Place on a tray, cover with the rest of the béchamel and grated cheese (optional), and bake in a preheated oven at 200ºC until golden.

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