Caribbean Flavor: Bakes and Codfish

28 Oct

Recipe by Metemgee

In the Caribbean, Codfish and Bakes are one of the most common dishes whether you’re in Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Jamaica or St.Vincent and the Grenadines you are sure to find a codfish meal ANYWHERE!. Have this dish for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Here’s the recipe to creating this mouth-watering meal by Metemgee or you can save yourself the time and come to the Caribbean for a taste! What’s better than Caribbean Flavor?


Bakes (makes 8 to 9)
3 cups flour (and 1/4 cup for kneading)
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 cups water
4 cups oil for frying (Canola or vegetable oil)

Salt fish
1 lb salted cod or other salted fish
About 8 cups water for boiling
2 large tomatoes (diced)
1/2 cup mixed bell peppers (I’m using frozen peppers in this recipe)
5 heads of green onions (finely chopped)
3 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
1 tbsp. dried thyme
pinch of cayenne pepper


How to: 

Bakes: In a large mixing bowl, add flour, sugar, baking powder and mix together thoroughly. You can use a whisk for this step or your hands. Make a well (hole) in the center of the mixed dry ingredients, add water and knead to form a soft dough. Knead together until dough is smooth. Cover with a damp paper towel and let sit for at least 30 minutes. After the dough has sat for 30 minutes, roll into a log on a floured surface and cut into 9 pieces. Knead each piece into a smooth ball. Cover with a damp paper towel and let sit for another 15 to 30 minutes.

When the dough is ready for frying, in a pot large enough for deep frying heat up 4 cups of oil. The oil should be about 300 F. If you bring it to 350 F(the regular temperature for deep frying, your bakes will burn and the inside will be raw). Roll each round dough balls into flat disks and submerge into the oil. The dough will initially sink to the bottom of the pot, then it will rise to the surface and begin to swell. After about 2 minutes or when the oil side of the bake is brown, flip the bake over to brown the top side (see video above). Once both sides are brown, remove from oil and place in a dish lined with paper towels.

Salt fish: Add salt fish and 4 cups of water to a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil for 10 to 15 minutes. You may need to reduce the heat as the salt fish sometimes boils over and causes quite a mess! After fish has boiled for 15 minutes, drain water, then add an additional 4 cups of water, bring to a boil and boil for another 15 minutes. Once the fish has boiled for another 15 minutes, remove from water and let cool. When fish cools, flake with a fork or your hands until all the flesh is completely flaky.

Seasoning the salt fish: Add 3 tbsp. oil to a large saute pan on medium heat. When oil is hot, add tomatoes, 2/3 green onions, bell peppers and garlic. Cook until tomatoes are soft, then add flaky fish, thyme and cayenne pepper. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure even cooking. Once the fish has cooked for 15 minutes, remove from the heat and add the remaining green onions.


Check out Metemgee or African Bites for more recipes!


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