Shetland Air Dried Salt Cod Bake

Recipe for Shetland Black Potatoes

You may not be able to visit the most northerly isles of the UK, but let them come to you with this gorgeous recipe.

Salted fish has been part of our food heritage for over a thousand years and this recipe reflects the traditions of the northern isles. This Shetland Air Dried Salt Cod Bake marries two Shetland ingredients magnificently.

Servings 2 persons



  • 1 80g pkt Shetland Air Dried Salt Cod
  • 300 mls double cream
  • 300 mls whole milk
  • 1 leek cleaned and sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • A generous twist of freshly milled black pepper
  • 100 g butter
  • 6 medium potatoes – Ideally Shetland Black
  • Garden chives to garnish


  1. Remove cod from its packaging and rinse under the cold tap to remove any excess salt.
  2. Place fish in a bowl of a sufficient size to submerge the fillet in cold water. Set aside in a cool place. After several hours, rinse off water and refill with fresh cold water to cover the fish. Continue to soak for a total of 48hours, refreshing the water at regular intervals three times each day.
  3. Remove cod from the final rinse and place in a pan on the hob. Poach in simmering water for approximately 15minutes, depending on thickness, until it is fully cooked, and flakes easily. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and place on a plate.
  4. Peel potatoes and slice quite thinly.
  5. Butter an ovenware dish and add a layer of potato, a twist of pepper and evenly scatter on flakes of cooked cod. Add a few knobs of butter, a scatter of finely sliced leek and pour over some of the creamy milk.
  6. Repeat adding layers of potato, cod flakes, leek, butter and cream until the dish is complete, adding a couple of bay leaves along the way.
  7. Cover with foil and bake in a pre-heated oven at 190 C for 1hour. The dish should be bubbling, toasted on the top and the potatoes fully cooked. You can remove the foil for the last 15minutes if it needs a little more toasting. Check during cooking and add a little milk if it looks to dry – this can depend on the size and depth of your dish and your variety of potato.
  8. Scatter with freshly chopped chives before serving.

Recipe Notes

Delicious for 2 as a main course served with Shetland kale or seasonal greens.

Scottish Food Guide

This recipe is from a collection by Wendy Barrie at the Scottish Food Guide and used with her permission. Wendy is also instrumental in the Ark of Taste programme which many of our varieties are listed in. Wendy has some amazing recipes!

The cod can be bought from Thule Ventus Ltd. They, like us, deliver UK wide. Thule Ventus produce their own salt-cured cod from individually line-caught sustainable stock off Sumburgh Head, Shetland.

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