Every time you eat local or regional ingredients such as salted cod, you absorb a slice of history. In 18th century New England, colonial residents prepared salted cod and traded the fish to the West Indies for other goods. The salt preserved the cod. Historically, codfish were larger than cod caught in the 21st century. Salted codfish, or salt cod, also refers to traditional fish prepared for Christmas in Sicily. Salted cod requires extra care in comparison with fresh cod.
Soak the salted cod in cold water for 24 to 48 hours to reduce the salt content. Change the water at least four times.
Season the cod with ½ tsp. of pepper per ½ lb. of cod. Slice the cod into 3--inch-by-6-inch pieces.
Heat the skillet to medium-high. Add 2 to 3 tbsp. of cooking oil into the pan. Test for the correct temperature by dripping a drop of water into the pan. If it sizzles, it is ready. The cod will release from the pan easily if the pan reaches a high enough temperature.
Place the cod into the pan and cook for four to five minutes on each side. Remove, plate, and serve the salted cod.