Podcast Episode 2: Baccalà

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Show notes

In this episode, I talk about how Italy, a peninsula literally surrounded by fresh fish, became one of the largest importers of preserved fish in the world. I recount the fascinating story of a 15th-Century shipwreck, for which eye-witness accounts have survived, which stranded a group of Venetians thousands of miles from home. What they found there was to change the course of Italian cuisine for centuries to come.

If you have any questions about this episode, please write them in the comments below and I will answer them as soon as possible. As always, if you enjoyed the episode, please share it with someone else you think might enjoy it. If you have a moment, please rate and/or write a review for this episode on iTunes. This will help other people to find and enjoy the podcast. Thank you so much for your continued support of Luca’s Italy and for all the wonderful feedback I’ve received so far. If you’d like to help me create and develop this podcast and receive exclusive bonus material and updates, please consider becoming a patron. Full details are on my Patreon site. Grazie mille!

The episode includes:

  • What baccalà is and where it comes from
  • The difference between stockfish and salt cod
  • The story of the shipwreck of the Querina, a Venetian merchant ship, in 1432
  • How the discovery of Newfoundland in 1497 changed the game
  • The first published Italian recipe with baccalà
  • How and why Italy came under the influence of Spain
  • The origins of the name
  • Where baccalà is eaten today
  • Different regional recipes using baccalà


Official tourist site for the Lofoten archipelago.

Producing stockfish in Lofoten.

A short film about Røst the island where the survivors of the Querina ended up.

A short film about a 2014 opera telling the story of Pietro Querini

  • baccalà
  • baccalà

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