Cod's roe refers to either the ripe egg mass in the ovaries of the fish or the fish eggs themselves. The adult female cod lays an average of four to six million tiny eggs with each spawning. They can be eaten raw or cooked.
Cod roes are often boiled whole before being sliced and fried, but they can also be used for taramasalata, a mixture of smoked roe and breadcrumbs that is popular in many Mediterranean countries. Cod has been an important commercial fish for centuries, both for food and for cod liver oil, and overfishing has led to a serious decrease in the number of cod in the wild.