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Salt Cod Gratin Brandade de Morue a Recipe from Provence

This salt cod gratin Brandade de Morue, a common Provençal dish, is a great way to showcase simple ingredients like fish and potatoes. It’s one of my favorite comfort dishes when I am in Provence. I like to serve this dish in individual ramekins because it is a great way to keep this meal hot and this presentation is elegant yet French country-style.

Salt-Cod Brandade Recipe Provence

Brandade de Morue

This recipe for a salt cod (morue) gratin is easy to make. Serve this seafood dish with a green salad and some crusty bread. The key to the recipe is allowing for the overnight soaking period for the cod, to remove preservative salt.
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 8 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine French, Provencal
Servings 8 people


  • 2 lbs Salt Cod boneless and skinless
  • 2 cups milk, whole
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 Thyme sprigs save 8 sprigs for garnish
  • 12 Peppercorns
  • 10 garlic cloves peeled
  • 4 Allspice Berries
  • 3 Cloves
  • 2 lbs Potatoes peeled and cut in cubes
  • 2/3 cup EVOO extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp Nutmeg grated
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs or coarse breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup Crème fraiche
  • 2 lemons zested and cut in quarters for step two
  • 6 tbsp Unsalted Butter
  • to taste Salt
  • to taste Pepper


  • Rinse salt cod and soak in 4 quarts of cold water overnight and then dry the cod.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200C).
  • Heat the milk in a double boiler and add thyme from 2 sprigs, bay leaf, cloves, peppercorns, allspice berries and lemons (but first zest the lemons and set aside for later).
  • Poach the fish gently in the milk and spice liquid for 15 minutes and set aside to cool.
  • In a second pot, cover potatoes with cold water and bring to a boil.
  • Add garlic cloves and 2 teaspoons salt.
  • Drain potatoes when they are soft, approx. 25 minutes.
  • Now, put the garlic in a small saucepan, crush it and add olive oil. Heat the garlic briefly (3 minutes) until it is infused in oil.
  • Put the cooked potatoes in a bowl. Flake the cooked cod on top in the same bowl. Using a potato masher, roughly blend the potatoes and the fish.
  • Add the warm garlic oil and mash the mixture again.
  • Now, add the nutmeg, cayenne pepper and the lemon zest previously set aside.
  • Next, add the crème fraiche and 1 cup of hot cooking liquid from boiling the potatoes and mix all the ingredients.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning, add salt and pepper as needed.
  • Use 2 tablespoons of butter to grease a 2 quart baking dish.
  • Add the fish-potato-spice mixture to a casserole (or single ramekins), sprinkle with breadcrumbs and put the remaining butter in small pieces on top.
  • Bake until golden and bubbling, about 20 minutes.
  • Then broil the tops for 2 minutes until golden brown.
  • Garnish with fresh thyme.


Alternatively, cook in 8 individual porcelain ramekins (4.5 inches in
diameter x .75 inch deep) which is a more elegant but still rustic presentation!
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Tasha Powell

Tasha Powell

Tasha Powell is a food stylist and writer who specializes in working with celebrity chefs and leaders in the hospitality industry. She cooks and styles for monographs, cookbooks and Satellite Media Tours, working between North America and Europe. Take a look at her mouthwatering photos on Cooking with a French Twist. Since July 2020, she has offered themed Zoom cooking classes influenced by her travels in France and Morocco. Here are a few:

• Fusion Vegetarian Menu: Cheese Soufflé, Grilled Vegetable Kabobs, Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Lime Crème Fraiche & Floating Islands
• Fall in Provence: Carrot Soup, Seared Duck Breast and Chocolate & Pear Tarte
• 3-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Panisse, Grilled Shrimp & Chocolate Towers with Michelin Star plating techniques
• Food Styling Tips: Apéro Dînatoire, presentation & plating
• 4-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce, Zucchini Rollups, Roasted Leek Salad & Chocolate Lava Cakes, Michelin Star plating techniques
• Just Stuffed! Stuffed Aubergines, Tomatoes & Zucchini
• Provençal Cuisine: Baked Ratatouille Tian & Tarte du Soleil
• Add Sparkle, Shimmer, Silver and Gold to Your Culinary Presentations! By Lynn Neuberg of Easy Leaf Products and Chef Tasha Powell

Class listings can be found at Chef Tasha Events

Tasha also arranges culinary tours with Barbara Pitcher in Provence, France, in Marrakech, Morocco, in Sicily, Italy and in Parry Sound, Canada under Pitcher and Powell Cuisine and Culture.

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