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Big Fish

Behold the ubiquitous salt cod. 

Salt cod

Salt cod 

 

Throughout the Iberian Peninsula—and many countries that touch the Atlantic Ocean—salt cod is more than a mere fish: the very words are redolent of history, economy, and culture.

A silky, highly prized version called bacalao—made in Spain by salting and curing Atlantic cod—appears folded into deep-fried croquettes at Shakewell and incorporated into fritters at the Commissary. But local-leaning chefs who want to do their own cod-salting must be creative. At Aatxe, Ryan Pollnow has found a viable alternative in black cod. Ryan McIlwraith of the 888 Brannan space is likewise experimenting with black cod, along with halibut and ling cod.

“I’m doing a lighter salt and then using it in the same traditional preparations,” McIlwraith says. “But whether it’s salad or fritters, it’s going through that California lens.”

 

Read more:
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Pintxos vs. Tapas:
 Cuál es la differencia?
Bomba Is the New Black: A taxonomy of rice and noodle dishes
Sherry, Baby: It's not just your Grandma's dessert wine
Happy Ending: Churros to rock your world

 

Originally published in the March issue of San Francisco

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