19 Grove St. ~ PO Box 58 ~ Peterborough, NH 03458 ~ 603-924-3235 

Please note face masks are required to visit the Monadnock Center. We thank you for doing your part to keep everyone safe and healthy!

Archives Research is now by appointment only. Please contact us at (603) 924-3235 to schedule an appointment.

By February 27, 2016 Read More →

Cod Fish Cakes- February 2016 Recipe of the Month

While I was researching favorite recipes of our founding fathers, I discovered John Adams who was president from 1797 to 1801 often enjoyed codfish cakes for breakfast. These cakes were actually a popular breakfast through to the 19th century. If Abigail Adams was making her husband codfish cakes at this time of year, she would have been using codfish that had been preserved in a hefty amount of salt. This preservation method required a lot of soaking and rinsing of the salted cod before it could be used in cooking.

Codfish cakes were often made from the leftovers of the previous day’s fish dinner. The recipe that follows is very basic, but if you’re making them at home, try using some leftover white fish that has been poached in milk with seasoning and herbs along with mashed potatoes that have been kicked up a notch with spices, herbs, and mustard. The final codfish cakes will be even better. When I’m making these at home, I roll the fish balls in dried bread crumbs (I like panko crumbs) after I dip them in the beaten egg. Though John Adams might not approve, you might consider serving this for dinner with a tomato sauce.

-Lorraine Walker

Codfish Cakes

  • 1 ½ lb. codfish (fresh or rehydrated)
  • 3 potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Fat for frying
  1. Place uncooked fish and potatoes in a saucepan covered with water.
  2. Cook over moderate heat until potatoes are tender.
  3. Thoroughly drain fish and potatoes and mash until smooth.
  4. Mix beaten egg into fish-potato mixture.
  5. Drop by tablespoons into hot fat. (Abigail probably used bacon fat.)
  6. Cook quickly and drain on paper towels.