Sea vegetables are very good for you. They will make you stronger and improve your overall outlook on life. Evidenced by the size and happiness of whales. Very popular in Asian culture for their healing power, sea vegetables aren’t really appreciated in North America the way they should be.
My friend, macro chef and co-author of The Great Life Cookbook, Priscilla Timberlake mentioned to me the other day that someone needs to remind the vegan community what the macrobiotic community knows so well … sea vegetables are incredibly good for you. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients not found in the same levels in land vegetables, they add amazing flavors to so many dishes.
Probably the most well known of the sea vegetables (and the one I use most often), would be Nori. This is the wrapping found on all vegetable rolls. I buy it in huge volume and always roll a sheet of warm rice, cut into 1 inch pieces and dip into ginger infused wheat-free tamari. This is a regular snack in our house and it’s easy and fun to make. Of course you can add avocado, cucumber and carrots in the roll for more flavor and color.
Grab a life vest and come aboard for a short tour of sea vegetables:
- Nori – This is mainly used for California rolls/vegetables rolls and contains iodine, all the carotenes, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and even Vitamin C. Usually sold in sheets and toasted, this is one sea vegetable you know you’ve tried.
- Wakame – I use this in a soup recipe and this is what is most likely floating in your miso soup. When added to boiling water, it expands up to seven times its size. Remove from water and cut into tiny pieces and put it back in the soup. Provides a beautiful taste of the sea. High in protein and calcium.
- Kombu – Dark purple in color, this sea vegetable adds iodine, calcium, magnesium and iron to your dish.
- Dulse – Full of potassium and protein. Dulse can actually be lightly fried in sesame oil for a crunchy topping to a salad or as a snack.
- Agar Agar – Flavorless, this is used as a thickening agent in many recipes.
There are other sea vegetables you can use but these are the ones I have tried or used myself in recipes. The health benefits of sea vegetables are endless, so give them a try!