Hidden treasures

Ca' Balà Street in Dorsoduro and codfish in Venice

Historical Curiosities

Ca' Balà Street in Dorsoduro and codfish in Venice

In the Dorsoduro District in Venice, near the Salute church, there is a strange name: Ca' Balà. At first glance we would be led to think that this refers to some noble family - like Ca' Foscari, Ca' Corner, etc ... Instead, it in fact, refers to fish!

This road is near the salt warehouses, a fundamental resource for the Venice Republic, and home to several stores where salted codfish was kept. In ancient times, therefore, the road was called 'Baccalà' (codfish), but it has been transformed over the centuries to Ca' Balà.

Cod is one of the undisputed protagonists of traditional Venetian cuisine and it is cooked in many different ways.

Legend has it that the salted cod arrived to Venice thanks to an intrepid explorer from the Republic: Petro Querini, who in 1431 ventured into Northern Seas.

Petro Querini's ship, the Gem Quirina, was caught by a storm in the English Channel and began to drift. The few survivors launched the lifeboats in the sea and trusted the fate. Only fourteen of them survived, were rescued by local fishermen and landed on the Norwegian island. They survived there a few months until they were able to go home with a precious treasure: cod.

If you are interested in the recipes of the Venetian tradition, our Venetian cooking course could be the perfect solution for you! It includes shopping at the Rialto market to select and purchase the raw ingredients, a cooking class and then tasting of the dishes you prepared at the famous Ai Assassini Osteria!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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