Cod is a firm, flaky, white fish that is mild in flavor. It is native to the North Atlantic and is popular in many of the surrounding countries. Heavily over-fished for years, it is a threatened species. Pacific cod is similar in taste and texture as well as plentiful.


Other names: Bacalhau, Bacalao, Codfish, Altantic Cod, Black Cod
Translations: Menca, Menkė, Bakalar, Cá thu, Dorsz, Kabeljauw, कॉड, Bacalhau, Треска, Γάδος, سمك القد, 대구, Treska, Ikan kod, Bakalaw, 鳕鱼, Bacallà, Treska, Merluzzo, בקלה, Torsk, Цод, タラ, Morue, Kabeljau, Torsk, Torsk, Bacalao, Тріска, Turska, Треска

Physical Description

Cod has a snow-white flaky flesh and a distinctive green and yellow speckles on its skin. It can grow to 2 meters (6ft 7 in) in length and weigh up to 96 kilo (210 lb) and can live for up to 25 years.

Colors: Silvery skin with green and yellow speckles

Tasting Notes

Flavors: sweet, mild
Mouthfeel: Flaky, Light
Food complements: Since it has such a light and mild flavor cod pairs with a wide variety of foods. it's excellent in fish stews and curries and is tasty both with sweet and savory seasonings.
Wine complements: White wine, Sauvignon blanc
Beverage complements: Beer
Substitutes: Pacific cod, Salt cod, Halibut, Whiting, Scrod, Pollock, Haddock, Hake, Scrod, Cape capensis, Orange capenis, Orange roughy, Tilapia, Sole, Flounder, Tilefish, Grouper, Red snapper, Striped bass

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: january, february, june, july, august, september, opctober, november, december
Choosing: When buying a whole fish look for clear, bright eyes. The skin or scales should still look clean or metallic.

Fresh fish should smell like clean water or a little briny. If it has a bad smell, it has already began to rot. Another sign that a fish is starting to rot is when you pinch it and the skin is already soft and doesnt "bounce" back. Milky liquid on a fish is another bad sign.

Check the gills to see if it is still bright red. A stale fish would have gills that have a darker shade of red, more like a faded brick red

Buying: Buy fish only from fish markets or fish vendors you trust. when buying fish from the supermarket. Frozen fish is better than the "fresh fish" section unless you trust that your supermarket does indeed sell fresh fish like when you are near to a local freshwater fishery.
Procuring: Adult cod spawn from late winter to spring

Preparation and Use

Scale and gut fish, then pack on a bed of crushed ice until it's ready for cooking.

Cod is perfect deep fried, baked or added in a fish chowder.

Cleaning: Remove any internal organs or scales on the fish. Wash under cold running water,

Conserving and Storing

Fish is one of the most perishable food we have. the best way to store fish is to keep them on ice even inside the refrigerator. Cod fish can survive in waters that are just above freezing, so to preserve them they need to be stored in a place colder than their living environment.

Take a large container that can fit the fish and fill it in with crushed ice.


For years the North Atlantic Cod was one of the world's largest fisheries. However, because of overfishing, the cod population have gone down and they are now listed as threatened or endangered.

History: Cod is an important commodity during the Viking period. Because it has a lower fat content, it was easily preserved and thus provided food for most seafarers.



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CalogeroMira's picture

Thanks 4 your recipes.