[ bah-kuh-lou, bak-uh-; Spanish bah-kah-lah-aw ]

noun,plural ba·ca·laos [bah-kuh-louz, bak-uh-; Spanish bah-kah-lah-aws]. /ˌbɑ kəˈlaʊz, ˌbæk ə-; Spanish ˌbɑ kɑˈlɑ ɔs/. Spanish or Spanish-American Cooking.
  1. codfish, especially when dried and salted.

  2. a dish of this, cooked with a tomato sauce, olives, garlic, etc.

Origin of bacalao

First recorded in 1545–55; from Spanish bacal(l)ao, probably from Basque bakaiļao, perhaps, by metathesis, from Gascon, the presumed source of Old French cabellau, cabillau (French cabillaud ) “fresh codfish,” equivalent to Gascon cabilh, cabelh (diminutive of cap “head”) + a suffix, alluding to the fish's prominent head; though Medieval Latin (Flanders) cabellauwus, the earliest attestation of the form (compare Middle Dutch cab(b)eliau, Dutch kabeljauw ) suggests a non-Romance, northern European origin; see chief

Words Nearby bacalao Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use bacalao in a sentence