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Cod or Halibut

c
capetowngirlie Aug 21, 2008 09:49 AM

Why would you choose one over the other? Please share your thoughts on the difference in flavour and quality.

I'm about to indulge in my annual fish and chips feast and want to make the best of it. My favourite fish and chips is in Cape Town, South Africa, where they use a fish called snoek, a bit like barracuda, yummm.

  1. BeeRich Aug 21, 2008 09:55 AM

    I am going to go out on a limb here, but I say Halibut outsells Cod, even in places like Ucluelet, where I just spent 3 weeks. Both are nice though.

    1. pepper_mil Aug 21, 2008 03:03 PM

      For fish and chips, cod hands down - deep frying seems to overwhelm what I like about halibut. I will always choose halibut for other preparations though. For a once a year indulgence though, I echo the question - why would you have to choose? Dont' most places let you mix it up?

      8 Replies
      1. re: pepper_mil
        Will Owen Aug 21, 2008 03:09 PM

        Not in most of the US - you get what they have, and that's it. Cod is probably getting harder to come by, as we seem to be running out of them, so I won't be surprised to see all kinds of other fish used as replacement.

        1. re: pepper_mil
          pikawicca Aug 21, 2008 03:27 PM

          Absolutely agree. Love halibut, but not for fish and chips; the texture is wrong.

          1. re: pikawicca
            Ruth Lafler Aug 21, 2008 09:21 PM

            And I disagree: I love halibut fish and chips. Also, it depends on the source. Atlantic cod is on the Seafood watch avoid list. Halibut is on the "best choices" list, but so is Alaskan cod.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler
              jayt90 Aug 21, 2008 10:58 PM

              Pacific halibut is sustainable whereas Atlantic halibut and cod are fished out. haddock is a well managed east coast fishery, and is good in fis and chips.

              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                v
                Val Aug 22, 2008 05:31 PM

                Whoa! Down here in Florida, halibut costs like $20.00 per pound and I am NOT kidding...wild-caught cod, though, you can find sometimes on sale for under $10...haddock too, a close cousin of cod. Halibut is a great fish but damn! It's out of reach for most of us, cod is much more affordable. Ruth, do you know why Atlantic cod is on the avoid list...is it being over-fished like so many other wild-caught species? Thanks!

                1. re: Val
                  Ruth Lafler Aug 25, 2008 10:12 AM

                  Yup. Cod has been drastically overfished for quite a while now. Actually, it seems like most of the major Atlantic food fish have been overfished -- not just cod, but bluefin tuna, etc. Remember a while back the Canadians actually fired on Spanish fishing boats that were taking turbot off the Grand Banks because they said they were overfishing and endangering the fishery there. http://www-tech.mit.edu/V115/N10/cana...

                  The Atlantic is surrounded by nations (US, Canada, Iceland, Europe) that have been harvesting heavily for a longer in a much smaller area relative to the northwest Pacific. It's not surprising it's badly overfished, and global warming isn't going to help.

                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                    v
                    Val Aug 25, 2008 03:47 PM

                    Thanks, Ruth!

              2. re: pikawicca
                c
                cstr Aug 22, 2008 05:36 AM

                I agree, plus at more than $15. pp it's a shame to batter and fry it, what a waste of a great tasting fish.

            2. c
              cstr Aug 21, 2008 04:33 PM

              Totally different kinds of fish, Halibut is a more solid and substancial fish steak, great for grilling for pan roasting. Cod is flakier and oiler, great for F&C's deep fried or broiled with lemon and butter sauce. Different taste and texture as well.

              1. Karl S Aug 21, 2008 05:54 PM

                For F&C: cod, not halibut.

                1. e
                  emilief Aug 22, 2008 12:27 PM

                  Here in New England fish and chips are made with cod. Halibut?? Broil it, don;t fry it! Have never seen fish and chips made with halibut. Cod and haddock are both excellent.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: emilief
                    Passadumkeg Aug 22, 2008 05:11 PM

                    I think, due to the decline of cod, most places in New England now use haddock. In the good old days, Fish 'N Chips in England used almost exclusively cod ( The 90's Cod War w/ Iceland?) in a newspaper cone. Now I think there is a switch to haddock too. Brit. help anyone?

                    1. re: Passadumkeg
                      Miss Needle Aug 22, 2008 05:15 PM

                      What is the taste difference between cod and haddock? I've had them both fish and chips style, but not at the same time. They tasted awfully similar to me.

                      1. re: Miss Needle
                        j
                        Jerome Aug 22, 2008 05:41 PM

                        There are even places here in california that will offer a choice of "east coast" fich and chips with cod and "west coast" with halibut.

                        1. re: Miss Needle
                          Passadumkeg Aug 22, 2008 05:45 PM

                          Google photos of cod & haddock. They and hake too (good for chowder) are all in the cod family (I think.).

                          1. re: Miss Needle
                            Karl S Aug 22, 2008 06:02 PM

                            Well, once fried, any flavor differences will be harder to detect, but haddock is a bit more finely flaked (comparing typically sized fish) and a bit sweeter. But a lot of people would be hard-pressed to tell unless they were really familiar with the two fish. And then there's hake - a favorite in Spain.

                            1. re: Karl S
                              pikawicca Aug 22, 2008 06:08 PM

                              How I wish we could get plaice here in the U.S. IMO, the best fish and chip fish ever.

                              1. re: pikawicca
                                Karl S Aug 22, 2008 06:14 PM

                                I had ray (skate) when I was in Ireland for fish and chips, which I loved. I had plaice for breakfast on many days.

                      2. Vetter Aug 22, 2008 06:16 PM

                        A resounding vote for halibut. Perfect halibut in a tender beer batter is amazing. Cod is "eh" and is the stuff of most cheap fish and chips places for a reason.

                        But this is why halibut fish and chips is an annual treat in my family-- it is pricy to feed a lot of people! I'm lucky to see it less expensive right off the boat sometimes.

                        Edited to say I'm in the Pac NW. Halibut fish and chips isn't uncommon out here in nicer places.

                        1. rabaja Aug 25, 2008 10:30 AM

                          I would go with the halibut. Every so often we luck out on a nice piece of halibut and always turn it into fish tacos. Soaked in buttermilk and dreged in masa harina, flour and cornmeal, it is excellent fried. Very moist.
                          I like cod, but don't see it very opften, and try not to buy endangered fish.
                          I do love a nice seared piece of halibut as well, but we are always happy with our fried fingers of halibut.

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