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Tasty Tuesday - Mom's Cod au Gratin

Cod au Gratin - one of my childhood favourites - and it still is, but nobody makes it like Mom! She originally found this recipe in the Traditional Recipes of Atlantic Canada cookbook series that Ultramar put out back in the day (which was a Wednesday, by the way* ;-). Now, she has tweaked it over the years, to make it lower in fat than the original.... amazingly still delish!

Did you know, by the way, that Cod au Gratin was basically a result of poor planning? The story goes that a St. John's hotel originally served the dish with only breadcrumbs. One night, the kitchen staff ran out of bread, and substituted cheese (of all things! The dude on Chopped would not have been impressed!). The following week when diners were served the original version, they sent it back, requesting the version with cheese! And now it is an internationally known dish - cool, huh?

So here it is, just like my Mama makes it!

Mom's Cod au Gratin

1 lb cod fillets
2 tbsp low fat margarine (i.e.: Becel)
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 1/4 c skim milk
1 tsp salt
pepper to taste
1 small onion finely chopped
1/2 c breadcrumbs
1/2 c. grated cheddar cheese


  • Place cod in greased baking dish.
  • In heavy saucepan, melt margarine; stir in flour until smooth and remove from heat.
  • Gradually stir in half the milk, return to heat and beat until smooth and shiny. Gradually add remaining milk, salt, pepper and onion. Cook, stirring constantly until thickened.
  • Pour sauce over fish in baking dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and cheese.
  • Bake at 375 degrees for 15-30 min or until sauce bubbles and fish is cooked through. 
Remember this? (Photo:

PS: Just found a reference online - places "back in the day" as 1988 in this case.
*Bonus points for you if you know this reference. LOL! ;-)

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous19:46

    Fantastic recipe. I actually have the Atlantic Canada recipe book you are referring to and have used the recipe for many years. I took it from my Mom's cook book collection when I went to university in 89. Thanks for the updated version. It is amazing!


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