Spicy Grilled Shark with Peach Salsa (Ultimate Recipe Swap: A Birthday Dinner)

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Birthdays are cause for special celebration at our house. Usually we let the Birthday Person choose one meal to eat out (within reason) and sometimes he gets to plan the other meals for the day as well. Each of my guys has a favorite that is often requested. So I usually have a feeling what each FishBoy might ask for.

Today’s Birthday Boy requested cereal, hamburgers, and Costco pizza. I think it’s probably the third year he’s asked for Costco pizza, so I guess that means, it’s been his “go to” meal since he could talk. (Just cheese, in case you were wondering.) It’s a great meal for our family. At $10 a pie, it also fits the budget.

Another child has more sophisticated tastes. At age 4 he asked for grilled shark with peach salsa. It’s true. And he’s requested it a number of times since then. Hopefully, now that we’re in the west, I may find ripe peaches for his birthday next month.

It’s an easy recipe and one that is adaptable to any kind of fish. We like shark because it doesn’t taste very “fishy,” and it can hold up to the spiciness of this rub. I like to serve it with rice pilaf, caesar salad, baguette, and cheese. And of course, a pretty cool cake!

Spicy, Grilled Shark with Peach Salsa
adapted from The Summer Book by Susan Branch

Spice Rub:
2 T. paprika
3/4 t. black pepper
2 t. sesame seed
1 t. cayenne
1 t. kosher salt
1 t. dill weed
1 t. dried lemon peel

2 pounds thresher shark steaks or fillets (You can also use halibut, swordfish, or tuna)
olive oil

3 lg peaches, pitted and diced
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 Tablespoon orange juice

In small glass bowl or jar, combine spices. Shake to combine. Rinse fish and pat dry with paper towel. Coat with a thin layer of olive oil. Sprinkle with spice rub and rub it in. This may be on the hot side, so adjust according to your tastes. Grill fish over med heat until it flakes. Meanwhile, combine salsa ingredients and chill until serving time. Serve shark with peach salsa.

What’s a special birthday meal at your house? Share it with us!

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3. Above all, please stick to topic. Today is Birthday Dinner Ideas. So, I guess anything goes if you’ve got the justification. But, if you’re bringing liver and onions to the table, you better have a very good story.

Have a story to go along with your recipe? We’d love to hear it!

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About Jessica Fisher

I believe you can get great meals on the table -- and still keep that pretty smile on your face.

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  1. Hoosier Homemade says:

    Wow, you’re brave! I don’t think I would ever make shark!
    Thanks for hosting!

  2. Snow White says:

    shark! wow.

    thanks for hosting each week — I love Thursdays 🙂

  3. Carrie K. says:

    Since you mentioned that a pizza pie at Costc only costs $10 and you also mentioned that you now live in the west…do you have a Papa Murphy’s Pizza (it’s Take and Bake) nearby? They have AWESOME pizza for oh so cheap! They currently have a Large 60-slice Pepperoni pizza for $5.99, and with a coupon (that you can pick up in store) you get it for $4.99! You could do two pizzas for under $10. Papa Murphy’s is our go-to eat out/pizza place!

    I’m fairly new (as in 2-3 months) to your blog, but I have SO enjoyed coming to visit everyday as I’ve started on this frugal journey. Thanks for sharing!

  4. VegMomma says:

    What a sophisticated little boy! I’m not trying to be a know-it-all, but becareful with shark and swordfish as they have a lot more mercury than most fish. Pregnant and nursing mothers are not supposed to eat it and neither are small children. Just thought you should know (in case you didn’t)

  5. Keowdie says:

    He's so cute! (And quite frugal to love the Costco pizza too!) I'll have to try the shark recipe. It sounds good.

    We do a special birthday thing in our home. The night before the birthday, the "Birthday Fairy" sneaks in and does something to decorate the birthday boy's room. Sometimes she hangs streamers from the ceiling, or puts party hats & noise makers everywhere, etc. Last year she single handedly blew up an entire package of balloons (45 of them!) and covered the floor to knee deep.
    I started doing this because the birthday almost always falls on a busy school day. This way we get something surprising & special on THE day, in addition to the party that's usually on the weekend.

  6. FishMama says:

    HH, I guess my hubby introduced me to shark in my college years when nothing scared me — at least foodwise.

    SW, Thankful for you! Thanks for being a faithful participant.

    Carrie, Papa Murphy’s was just down the road from us when we lived in Kansas, but I haven’t seen one near our new home. Thanks for the reminder. It is a great deal! (That was our old standby.) So glad to have you reading. I hope that you will be encouraged in your frugal journey.

    VegMomma, thanks for making that point. It’s been quite some time since we’ve had shark due to economic and availability issues. I don’t think I ever bought it in Kansas. Your mercury point is well taken. (And I thought you said it in a very nice way.) 😉

    Keowdie, love the memories you are making. How fun! Thanks for sharing those ideas!

  7. Kimberly says:

    I don’t have a recipe to share, but this reminds me of birthdays growing up. My grandmother usually did Sunday lunch and the whole family came. The months where we had family birthdays, the birthday people for that month would decide on what meal Grandma would cook, and what kind of made-from-scratch cake she would make. Then the birthday people got to serve their plates first! Afterward we exchanged presents or cards. It was a fun way to celebrate all the special days.

  8. FishMama says:

    Kimberly, what a wonderful multi-generational tradition!

    Does anyone else do something like this?

  9. MaRiN says:

    Wow Shark! I wouldn’t even know where to buy shark.

  10. Hobby Cooking says:

    Thank you for such amazing information….your recipes are really good….!!

    catch me @ http://hobbycooking.blogspot.com

  11. Dana says:

    I’m sorry…I was trying to add my A Very Nearly Tea link to the frugal post, not this one.

    The compost for my garden would NOT be a good birthday dinner idea.

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