Eat More Fish : Spicy Pollock Fillets

Pollock or pollack is the common name used for either of the two species of marine fish in the Pollachius genus. Both P. pollachius and P. virens are commonly referred to as pollock. Other names for P. pollachius include the Atlantic pollock, European pollock, lieu jaune, and lythe; while P. virens is sometimes known as Boston blues (distinct from bluefish), coalfish (or coley), silver bills or saithe. Both species can grow to 3 ft 6 in (1.07 m) and can weigh up to 46 lb (21 kg).

Pollock is a white, flaky fish with an olive-green back and a pale-silver belly. It has proved to be an excellent substitute for cod and rivals cod’s flavour when fresh.  Alaska Pollock is high in protein and low in fat. This fish provides between 400 and 500 milligrams of heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids per 3 ounce cooked serving.

It’s a member of the cod family and its characteristics can vary according to the variety (Atlantic or Pacific). It is sometimes known as lythe and is often marketed by its French name, colin. It was originally thought fit only for cat food, the Scots used to cover the fillets in oatmeal and fry them, while the Norwegians cooked it as minced fish balls, food producers have used it in fish fingers and Macdonalds use it in their Filet-o-fish. However, it is now the eighth most popular fish to eat, according to Seafish, a Government initiative to promote the fishing industry. British consumers bought more than 13,000 tons of it in a year, outselling both scampi (5,700 tons) and trout (4,400 tons) combined.

Karen Galloway, market insight manager at Seafish, said: “Pollack’s popularity has certainly been helped by the current economic climate as people switch from more expensive fish to cheaper alternatives.” A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s said renaming Pollack and calling it by its French name, colin, was a temporary trial measure. They also said: “Sales did go up by more than 50 per cent. We are currently in consultation about whether or not to change the name permanently since people seem to be embarrassed to ask for pollack.”

Alaska Pollock, also known as Walleye Pollock, is the most common type of Pollock in U.S. markets and the largest catch by volume in the United States, indeed in the world. Alaska Pollock has consistently been one of the top five seafood species consumed in the U.S. and since 2001, U.S. commercial landings of Alaskan Pollock (primarily in Alaska) have been well over 2 billion pounds each year.

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp of whole  milk
  • 60g plain white flour
  • A large pinch of cayenne pepper
  • A large pinch of garam masala
  • A large pinch of cumin
  • pollock fillets
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of pepper
  • 240g of Japanese panko breadcrumbs

Method

Preheat the oven to 230 degrees/ Gas mark 8.

In a mixing bowl, combine egg and milk. Next on a separate plate, spread the flour, cayenne, garam masala and cumin powder on a plate. Season each pollock fillet thoroughly with salt and pepper. Dip each fillet in egg mixture, then in the flour mixture, then in panko breadcrumbs. Place on a baking sheet lightly sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake in the oven 12-15 minutes or until the fish is cooked through. We’ve served ours simply here with homegrown chard.

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