Other Names: Saithe, coalfish, coley, Boston bluefish, Pacific tomcod; Atlantic, Pacific, or Alaska pollock
Identification & Biology: A member of the cod 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.
Market Description: The color and texture of the flesh varies according to region: Atlantic pollock are tannish-gray and very firm (though slightly oily), while the Pacific variety are white and codlike with a more tender texture. Pollock has a moderate to low fat content and a mild, slightly sweet flavor. The skin is edible.
Habitat: Temperate cold waters north pacific
Flavor Profile: Flakey delicate texture, mild flavor
Fishing Technique: long line
Special Note: Popular for imitation crab meat
Suitable Sub: Cod, Haddock
Sold as: Fillets (most common), steaks, whole (less common--smaller specimens only); smoked
Buying tips: 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.
Recommended Preparation: You can prepare pollock as you would cod. Fillets roast, broil, and sauté very nicely. Use the cooked meat, mixed with a potato-and-herb mixture, to make batter-dipped deep-fried fritters.
Substitutes: Blackfish, Cod, Flatfish, Rockfish, Red snapper, Whiting
Notes: 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.