If you’re familiar with the delicious lard of black cod (also known as saberfish, or rarely and sometimes falsely, wild Alaskan cod), you can skip it later. For the rest of you, if you think a fried beer batter and a side of potato chips are where you last ate, think again! True cod or rock cod are the “fish and chip” fish. It would be a sacrilegious right to coat and fry the black cod. This fish is a delicacy. An expensive delicacy, but still a delicacy!
I try to keep things fairly affordable and easy to scale for large groups around here … but sometimes I feel the need to share a super easy and healthy meal that feels forgiving from start to finish, even if the price makes it a little bit prohibitive on a large scale. For a cost perspective, think about your last visit to the fish market or the seafood section of your local supermarket. Black cod is usually slightly more worn than halibut. I don’t want to give you the recent market price here because the prices of any of these fish will vary greatly depending on their geography and the time of year. Right now at PNW, prices are probably a little lower than elsewhere.
Black cod, olive oil, salt, pepper, and a pinch of saffron are not a recipe. Then I will call it a vehicle to experience the delicate flavor and buttery nature of our star ingredient. The words on this page are an attempt to persuade you to try black cod!
Black cod is almost a fish superfood. Like several other fish, it has some of the highest health benefits that exist naturally! It is high in omega-3 (also called eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid, which is more commonly known as DHA. Excuse me as I dust off some cobwebs from my college nutrition class. EPA and DHA combine to form those “long chain” fatty acids found only in fish and fish oils. Because they are important? The combination of these two nutrients has such powerful heart benefits that a diet rich in them can reduce the risk of heart disease-related deaths by up to 36%. They can even help stabilize and prevent cardiac arrhythmias, lower blood pressure, and reduce blood clot formation.
Let’s compare it to salmon, which is also rich in EPA and DHA, for a moment. Most doctors and nutritionists encourage their patients to eat salmon regularly, and most consumers consider salmon to be a healthy source of protein. Both black cod and salmon are rich in vitamin B-12. Black cod has a significantly lower level of mercury than salmon, which is good since high concentrations of mercury are dangerous. Now let’s back off that amazing buttery texture. Black cod is rich in the delicious Omega-3 fats good for you, but it’s also higher in saturated fat than salmon. Don’t forget that salmon and fish in general are a very lean source of protein.
In my opinion, here is the end result. Is black cod good for you? Yes. Are you going to eat black cod every day? No. Should you eat salmon more often than black cod? Yes probably. Is black cod even better for you than most other protein sources? Absolutely!!!
So let that rich butter flavor come out and watch the fish crumble and melt in your mouth. No fancy sauces or spice mixes are needed.