Man eating shark, cooking shark is easier than you think


With Discovery’s Shark Week examining all things shark related, FoodSided poses the question about man eating shark. Cooking shark is easy and can be delicious.

The annual Discovery Channel Shark Week peaks people’s fascination with sharks. While some people fear these creatures, sharks are vital to the ocean. While no one is suggesting that you try to catch a Great White Shark, like in Jaws, some sharks are, and can be caught. If you catch a shark, can you eat it? Cooking shark doesn’t have to be a difficult endeavor.

First, I am not talking about shark fin soup. I am talking about eating a black tip shark that are common around the Florida coast. During a fishing excursion, my son caught a shark. He was very proud of his catch and wanted to know if we could cook it. As our captain fileted the shark, we researched ways to cook the shark.

Man eating shark, cooking shark, photo by Cristine Struble

Some findings recommend that shark shouldn’t be eaten. The reason is because of the mercury found in shark. Sharks are opportunistic feeders. They eat whatever food is readily available. Because of a shark’s feeding habit, the shark’s muscles, or meat, can have high levels of mercury and other toxins.

To make the shark ready for cooking, it should be soaked in buttermilk for several hours .The buttermilk helps to remove the toxins from the meat. Just cooking the shark will not remove the toxins and mercury. These items must be removed prior cooking.

Man eating shark, cooking shark, photo by Cristine Struble

We soaked the shark filets in buttermilk for several hours. Since our filets were trimmed, we didn’t have to worry about removing dark spots. If a filet has dark spots, those areas should be removed prior to cooking.

Cooking shark can be accomplished in several ways. It can be grilled, fried or even smoked. Shark is a denser meat, like swordfish. A generous amount of seasoning is a good idea. Seasoning choices depend on personal preference. Our family likes smoky, bold flavors, similar to a southwest style seasoning.

Like cooking any protein, there is a fine balance to cooking to the best temperature and not over-cooking. If shark becomes over-cooked, it can be quite dry. Dry shark can’t really be saved, even with a sauce.

shark filet, photo by Cristine Struble

For our shark, we smoked it on a Big Green Egg. After liberally seasoning, we put it on the Big Green Egg for around 20 minutes. The shark was moist and flavorful. My son, who caught the shark, was happy with his dinner.

While our family may not purposely search for shark filets for Sunday dinner, we did enjoy our shark dinner. Cooking shark wasn’t as difficult as people told us. If you know how to cook fish, you should be able to cook shark as well. Just remember the buttermilk soak.

Next: Shark Week parties

Are you ready for man eating shark? Don’t fear the shark or the water. Time to dive right in.

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