Veracruz Shark Recipes

In Misantla, I took notes on how to make stuff with sharks.  I am a terrible cook but I do know what I like.

Shark Ceviche

Sharks should be somewhat frozen to make handling easier.  Some people think it's really important to flash freeze any fish eaten raw.  I don't know if that's a common practice in Veracruz.


  • ~6 2' sharks
  • 1 large white onion
  • 3 jalapeño peppers
  • 8-12 limes


  1. chop of shark heads.  Remove filets from body, separating from spine.  slice meat away from skin.
  2. discard heads, spines, skin
  3. cube shark meat
  4. finely chop onions and peppers (including seeds)
  5. place incredients in bowl
  6. juice 8-12 limes (enough to cover the shark/onion/pepper mixture)
  7. let stand ~20 minutes


Add catsup, maynaise and orange soda.  It sounds gross but it's not entirely terrible.  I prefer it "natural" however.

Shark Minilla

This is a typical dish from Veracruz.  It's basically shredded shark with a tomato/pepper sauce.  People from the mountains won't eat it when made from shark because shark's eat people and I guess that's just too close to cannibalism for their comfort.


  • ~6 2' whole juvenile sharks
  • 2-3 whole tomatoes
  • several dried ancho chiles
  • several large dried chiles of some other variety
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • clove sprigs
  • salt
  • some other misc spices
  • manteca (pork lard)
  • 1/2 stick butter

  1. Take frozen sharks (not frozen hard, just enough to make cutting & handling easier) and cut into thirds.  If sharks are not frozen, adjust cooking time accordingly.
  2. Boil in water ~15 minutes
  3. Remove sharks from water and set aside to cool
  4. Boil the tomatoes and dried chiles in the shark water
  5. Once cool enough to handle, gently pull the skin away with a fork and shred the shark meet.  Discard skin, heads and spines.
  6. Put a hunk of manteca into a large ceramic/stoneware pot (I imagine cast iron would work as well) and melt.  Add shredded shark and chopped garlic
  7. Discard most of the shark water.  Put the rest along with tomatoes, peppers and spices in a blender.  Add fresh water and blend.
  8. Put contents of blender, 1/2 stick of butter in the pot with shark meat.  
  9. Cook for a bit, stirring well.

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