Knowing When and How to Retool Old Family Recipes

Maggie Hennessy

A variation on cod fish cakes—bacalao fritters bound with potato and egg—features in most places edged by an ocean worldwide. Chef Rashida Holmes’ family recipe originated with her great aunt Vie, who was born in Barbados. They’ve been Holmes’ dad’s favorite food “since his whole life,” says the chef/owner of Caribbean pop-up Bridgetown Roti in Los Angeles. Fittingly, the crisp-edged, chewy cakes represent Holmes’ first food memory, too....