A traditional dish from the Canadian provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador. Definitely not for anyone on a low fat or low sodium diet. Delicious as all get-out! Accompany with boiled lemony peas or your favourite steamed vegetable.
Place hard bread into a pot. Cover bread with several inches of cool water, place a lid on the pot, and soak 8 hours to overnight.
Rinse salt cod under running cool water; place into a pot. Cover fish with several inches of cold water, place a lid on the pot, and soak in the refrigerator 8 hours to overnight.
Add salt to soaked bread and bring just to a simmer over medium-low heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Drain immediately; cover to keep warm.
Drain fish and cover with fresh water; bring to a boil. Cook until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, about 20 minutes. Drain fish; remove any bones. Stir fish into prepared hard bread.
Cook and stir fatback in a frying pan over medium heat until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Pour fatback and drippings over fish and bread mixture. Stir gently just to combine; serve immediately.
Diced bacon or pancetta can be substituted for the fatback.
If you are using fresh fish: Pour the cooked fatback or bacon or pancetta with drippings over the uncooked fish in a 2 quart (2L) baking dish; bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, about 15 minutes. Any fresh 'white' fish can be used in this manner although cod is preferable. Remove any bones before combining with the prepared hard bread.
I like to serve this with 2 cups (500ml) boiled frozen peas, to which I add 1 tablespoon (15ml) lemon juice after cooking and draining.