Good Friday Parpuchas – Salt Cod Fritters

Today, even though we are in England, we kept up a tradition from Big Man’s family in Andalucia and made Parpuchas. Light, fluffy fritters of salt cod, parsley and garlic. Traditionally served (as we did) with a drizzle or a dunk of Miel de Caña (Molasses). It sounds odd but I promise you, the combination of sweet and salty really does work. If you don’t have access to salt cod (which you’ll have to desalt) this works well with any other firm raw fish.

Parpuchas 007

I will post the recipe below, but if you’d like to read the original post from a couple of years back and to see some of the traditions of Holy Week in Spain, do check out the original.


  • 200g (desalted) salt cod, shredded into small flakes
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 cup of flour (approx)
  • 2 large tablespoons of finely chopped parsley
  • 1 finely chopped or crushed clove of garlic
  • Salt to taste if you are not using salt cod
  • Oil for deep frying

Add the milk, bicarbonate, parsley, garlic and fish to the beaten eggs and then gradually add the flour until you have a thick batter.  It needs to be about the texture of thick lumpy custard (not that any of you, I am sure, have ever made lumpy custard!).

Heat the oil until a cube of stale bread turns brown quickly when dropped in and then drop spoonfuls of batter into the oil. I used a tablespoon and it gave me rather large parpuchas – I´d recommend using about half a tablespoon full as they will puff up slightly. When they are brown on the bottom (and they will float to the top), flip them over and cook on the other side. They will not be in the oil for long.

Remove with a slotted spoon, drain and sit them on kitchen paper for a few moments and serve hot, drizzled with Miel de Caña (to be typical) but also good with  lemon, alioli or tartare sauce. If you make too many, they are still very tasty cold as they retain their texture.

All that remains for me to say before we move into the rest of the Easter weekend is a very Happy and Peaceful Easter, or Happy Passover if that is what you celebrate, or a Happy Few Days with your loved ones. Watch out for those chocolate bunnies…..


48 thoughts on “Good Friday Parpuchas – Salt Cod Fritters

  1. They look just as good the second time around. I love the little branches poking out from the parpuchas. I could eat a lot of those with allioli. Happy Easter 🙂

    1. I think they got branches because we were hungry and I was slinging them in quickly to very hot oil and the drips cooked as soon as they hit the pan! The ones that snapped off when they were done were gobbled up by us and the dogs got a few as a treat 😉 Happy Easter!

      1. Portuguese and maybe Spanish missionaries/traders took tempura to Japan and the Japanese adopted it, using it for vegetables as well as fish. Tempura comes from the Latin tempora – time period, used to refer to Lenten days, where meat wasn’t eaten. 😉

      2. Thanks Tanya. i think cod in batter probably has the same origin too. It was supposed to have been brought to Britain by Jews fleeing persecution in Spain and Portugal.

  2. A lovely share for Easter Ms Chica. It’s Saturday here and Stevie-boy ended up having vegetable soup in lieu of fish but damned good soup it was. Have a lovely easter with your gorgeous big man and here’s to tradition 🙂

    1. Of course, you’re ahead of us! Veggies tonight for us I think….although no longer quite such a good Catholic girl, old habits die hard J Have a great weekend Ms Narf x

  3. That sounds wonderful…I love salt cod. I remember, back in the 80’s, we used to go to a Portuguese restaurant in a basement just off the Kings Rd…in Markham Sq I think. Nice memories…I must try this recipe.

  4. That looks very good. The Management and I compromised by buying fish and chips in Bewdley today. They excelled at Merchants but I am sure that your code as better.

  5. What fun learning Mad!! Had no idea the journey Portuguese cooking had taken to be my favourite Japanese tempura!! Well, I do shy away from anything deepfried, but this looks jumbunctious 🙂 !! Happy Easter break to all!!

    1. Jumbunctious – what a marvellous word! Deep frying is only an occasional treat here, but we’re lucky to be able to fry in olive oil, so it takes a teeny tiny bit of the guilt away. I also always make sure to have a fire extinguisher in my house just in case….

  6. I love salt cod croquetas but your recipe is easier than the Moro one I usually use for those, fritters being a bit more straightforward than croquettes! In Andalucía I used to have some very tasty berejena con miel de caña, which I agree is really delicious drizzled on a deep-fried fritter, salt cod or aubergine.

    1. I’ve got the Moro one too! I agree that the croquets made with béchamel are a bit more complicated…you have to get the texture of the sauce just right or they won’t hold together L I do love them though and now you’ve reminded me to make some!

  7. Your site is so yummy! I often check into your site for ideas when I don’t know what to make to eat. So today we are going to make fritters. I’ve made them before, I like them with corn and peas and garlic and onions. I’ve never tried them with miel de caña, going to today!

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