|Floured pollack fillet is shallow fried in olive oil and served with salad|
Pollack really is a delicious eating fish and it's a great shame that many people have yet to realise this fact. A close cousin of the Atlantic cod, pollack is plentiful around the West of Scotland and can provide great sport off the rocks from shore, or over wrecks in deeper water. It's also good to see that many supermarkets are now openly offering pollack for sale, whereas it used to be the case that it was only sneakily included in fish pies and fish fingers, allowing people to mistakenly believe that they were eating cod!
|Fresh pollack ready to be filleted|
Pollack can essentially be cooked in exactly the same ways as you would be likely to be cook cod. The fish can be filleted as in this instance, or simply baked whole in the oven if they are not too big. This recipe idea is really simple but it allows the natural taste of the fish to shine through.
|Fillet of fresh pollack is defrosted prior to being cooked|
Freezing fish is not something I am usually keen on doing, as I believe that in most instances, any type of fish has to be eaten at its freshest to be enjoyed at its best. Firm fleshed white fish like pollack, however, represents a grudging exception to this rule, especially when a catch has been plentiful and there is too much to eat at the time. This fillet had been frozen simply wrapped in a plastic freezer bag and was removed from the freezer and packaging to a plate a few hours before being cooked, covered and left to fully defrost.
|Ingredients for simple accompanying salad|
You might find it a good idea to prepare and plate your salad before you start cooking the pollack. This simply allows you to devote your full attention to the fish and make sure you don't overcook it. You can create any salad of your choice but this one is a basic combination of little gem lettuce, raw onion, cherry tomatoes and cucumber. The lettuce is roughly shredded, the onion finely sliced, the cherry tomatoes halved and the cucumber roughly chopped. Season with salt and pepper, toss and plate. A few pitted black olives were added here at the last minute but I know they're not to everyone's taste, so add them or not per your preferences.
|Salad is prepared and plated before pollack is fried|
Bring some olive oil up to a medium heat in a non-stick frying pan. Scatter a couple of tablespoons of flour on a plate and season well with salt and pepper.
|Pollack fillet is dusted on both sides in seasoned flour prior to being fried|
Pat the defrosted pollack fillet in the flour on both sides, ensuring it receives a good, even coating. Gently shake off the excess and lay it in the frying pan.
|Pollack fillet is added to hot olive oil in non-stick frying pan|
Fry the pollack on a medium heat. The precise cooking time will obviously depend upon the thickness of the fillet but work to around three to four minutes on each side. You should be able to check the frying progress simply by looking at the fillet from the sides.
|Pollack fillet is carefully turned half way through cooking|
When you can see the pollack has cooked half way up the side, carefully turn it with a large spatula or fish slice and fry for a similar period of time on the second side.
|Pollack fillet is plated alongside the salad|
Lay the pollack fillet on the plate beside the salad. Garnish with some freshly chopped basil or parsley, place a wedge of lemon on top of the pollack fillet and serve immediately.
|Basil is an optional garnish for the pollack and salad|