20. mars 2024

Spanish culinary students reinterpret Icelandic salted cod


Culinary student Marta Oti from Barcelona won the competition and a dream trip to Iceland as a prize

On March 20, the annual Bacalao de Islandia competition among culinary students occurred in Mérida, Spain. The nation's most skilled young chefs prepared Icelandic salted cod in inspiring dishes. This is the third time Seafood from Iceland has sponsored the contest, with 18 schools from all corners of Spain participating, following a preliminary competition in each school.

With nearly 200 students participating each year, the Bacalao de Islandia competition serves as a significant platform for introducing many newly graduated chefs to the versatility and richness of Icelandic salted cod. This ingredient, historically a staple in many popular dishes in Spain and Iceland's largest salt cod market, takes center stage in the competition. The event, a part of the marketing project Seafood from Iceland, managed by Business Iceland, is a strategic initiative aimed at promoting Icelandic salted cod in the culinary schools and food sector. Similar competitions are held annually in Portugal and Italy, other significant markets for salt cod.

This year's standout chef (among many) was 21-year-old culinary student Marta Oti from the ESHOB school in Barcelona. She wowed the judges with her dish, "Historia y Memoria" (History and Memory ). Marta's culinary masterpiece featured a unique blend of flavors and textures, including apple compote, confit leeks, lemon with cod tripe stew, and Iberian ham in ajoarriero style. The dish was further elevated with a Kokotxa in pil-pil sauce and a glaze made from cod trimmings and txacolí. Marta's exceptional culinary skills and creativity earned her a dream trip to Iceland, a well-deserved prize that serves as an inspiration to all aspiring chefs, especially those at the beginning of their culinary journey. The pictures below are a testament to the talent and dedication of these young chefs, and you can also follow their journey on Instagram.

See photos from the event below.

Spanish culinary students reinterpret Icelandic salted cod

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