This popular saltwater fish can range from 1½ to 100 pounds and comes from the Pacific and North Atlantic Oceans. Cod's mild- flavored meat is white, lean and firm. It's available year-round and comes whole (the smaller specimens) or in large pieces. Cod can be baked, poached, braised, broiled and fried. Whole cod are often stuffed before baking. Cod can be preserved by smoking, salting or drying. Salt cod, an important staple in many tropical countries because of its storage properties, has been salted and dried. It's used to make the popular French dish brandade. Cod cheeks and tongues are considered a delicacy. So are scrod, which are young cod (and haddock) weighing under 2½ pounds. Haddock, hake and pollock are all close relatives of cod. See also fish.

From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

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