Atlantic cod is arguably the most important fish in American history because it was the species with which the colonists took their first steps toward economic and political freedom. It was tragically overfished in the 20th century, and stocks still remain low. Management plans now ensure that some Atlantic cod is pulled out of the sea at sustainable rates, but unfortunately, a responsibly fished whole cod is still harder to find than cut fillets in retail outlets. It can also be hard to tell whether a given fish has been responsibly harvested, but third parties such as Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch or the Marine Stewardship Council can help identify which cod is best from that point of view. If you can’t find a sustainably harvested cod, the recipes that follow will work with any 6- to 8-pound whole fish. If you’re on the West Coast, look for rockfish or Pacific cod. For the landlocked, try steelhead trout or salmon.