This is a most popular dish throughout France, and hails from Nîmes. It is often called “the glory of Nîmes,” and you will be told there that nowhere else can you get a perfect brandade, but I have had equally delicious ones in Paris, and even in England—in my own home!
Soak the cod for 12 hours in cold water. Scale the fish, cut it up in several pieces, and put in a saucepan of cold water. Bring to the boil, and remove at once from the water. Skin the pieces of fish and remove all the bones. Replace the fish in a saucepan, on a very slow fire—this is an essential factor in the success of the brandade—and stir in, with a wooden spoon, first a tablespoon of warm oil, to which the pounded garlic has been added, then one of warm milk and so on, till all the oil and milk are used up, and till the brandade presents the appearance of a thick and smooth white purée. Season with pepper, nutmeg, the juice of 1 lemon, and a little salt if necessary. Put on a hot dish and garnish with thin slices of bread, previously fried in butter.