Pollock recipes for Baked, Simmered, Fried, Broiled, Poached, Smoked and Grilled Pollock
Pollock (Pollachius virens)
Also known as: Pollack, saithe, coalfish, coley, Boston bluefish, big-eyed fish, Pacific tomcod, Atlantic pollock, Pacific pollock or Alaska pollock.
Waters: Atlantic Pollock occur on both sides of the North Atlantic; in the Northwest Atlantic, the species is most abundant on the western Scotian Shelf and in the Gulf of Maine. Alaska pollock aoccur in the North Pacific from Alaska to northern Japan.
A member of the cod and haddock family, pollock is a long, thin, big-eyed fish ranging from 4 to 35 lbs. The back is greenish-brown or a deeper, charcoal color that fades to a silvery belly. It differs in appearance from others in the cod family by having a pointed snout and a projecting lower jaw, a more rounded body, and a forked rather than a square tail.
The color and texture of the flesh varies according to region: Atlantic pollock are a lean fish with somewhat darker flesh than cod, are tannish-gray and very firm (though slightly oily), has a strong, sweet taste, while the Alaska pollock has white flesh and codlike firm tender texture, a milder taste, lower oil content and is often used in surimi. Pollock has a moderate to low fat content and a mild, slightly sweet flavor. The skin is edible.
Boneless fillets are creamy tan in color. Cooked, the lean meat is white and firm with good flake. Full-grown Atlantic pollock meat is grayish in color.
Pollock can be poached, baked, broiled, grilled or put into fish chowders. Atlantic pollock makes good fish and chips. Because it has about a third more fat than cod, it's more forgiving and flavorful. Fillets roast, broil, and sautée very nicely. Use the cooked meat, mixed with a potato-and-herb mixture, to make batter-dipped deep-fried fritters.
How to buy Pollock:
Quality Pollock is easy to recognize. The color of the flesh may vary from fish to fish, but it should be uniform and moist, free of browning, gaping, and signs of drying. Make sure there are no off odors. Fresh Pollock never smells fishy, and the eyes should appear bright and clear, almost alive. The gills should be clean, and the skin moist and with tightly adhering, shiny scales. Fresh Pollock flesh will give slightly when you press it with a finger, then spring back into shape.
Alaska pollock weigh 1 1/2 to 2 pounds, with small fillets (2 to 3 ounces). Fish that have been frozen twice (once whole aboard ship, and a second time after filleting) are apt to be gray. Choose deep-filleted pollock with the dark fat line removed; they will be milder in flavor and whiter in color. Atlantic pollock usually weigh 10 to 20 pounds and must be extremely fresh or they will be unpleasantly wooly in texture.
How to fillet Pollock:
Make on both sides of the belly fins and gills an incision. Take of the head. Put your knife above the back fin and fillet the fish till the end of the tail. Cut the fillet till you'll see the middle belly bones. Put your knife to the end of the belly bones (half at the fish) and push your knife trough the fish and cut the fillet of to the tail. Cut of the belly side, now you can see the belly bones. Cut into the small skin with the top of your knife to the end of the belly. Hold on the belly side and presses you knife in the incision and cut this side of.
The other side is the same only you starts at the tail.
How to skin Pollock:
Clean your Pollock with the back of your knife. Make a small incision in the fillet TO the skin. Push with your finger tops the skin firmly on the Pollock and makes at the same time short saw movements and cut the fillet down to the tail.
Freezing and cold storage:
A pollock should be bled, gutted and iced immediately after capture to preserve its excellent taste and delicate texture. To store Pollock, rinse fish under cold water, and pat dry with paper towels. Fish deteriorates when it sits in its own juices, so place it on a cake rack in a shallow pan filled with crushed ice. Cover with cling wrap or foil and set in the coldest part of the refrigerator. Pollock will store well this way for up to 2-3 days. It can be frozen for up to 4 months.
Atlantic Pollock is an excellent source of healthy vitamins and Minerals. Per 3.5 oz (100 g) raw edible portion it contains 118 Calories, 1.26 g Total Fat, 110 mg Sodium, 24.92 g Protein, 456 mg Potassium, 77 mg Calcium, 0.59 mg Iron, 86 mg Magnesium, 283 mg Phosphorus, and also Vitamin A, Vitamin B-12, Vitamin B-6.
When cooked (dry heat), Atlantic cod provides 0.159 grams of omega-3 fatty acids derived from EPA (0.004g), DHA (0.154g), and ALA (0.001g) per 100 grams of fish.
When cooked (dry heat), Pacific cod provides 0.279 grams of omega-3 fatty acids derived from EPA (0.103g), DHA (0.173g), and ALA (0.003g) per 100 grams of fish.
Substitutes for Pollock:
Blackfish, cod, flatfish, rockfish, red snapper, whiting.
In the U.S., pollock is the fish of choice for processed seafood. It is often used to make surimi and similar shellfish substitutes. Fish sandwiches, which are popular in restaurants and fast-food establishments, are often prepared with pollock.
Back to top