How to get more seaweed into your diet

By Ella Walker. Published 2020-05-28
BOLD-Food
It’s ridiculously good for you, and very versatile – plus, tasty.

Aside from the odd bit of nori-wrapped supermarket sushi, you may not come into contact with seaweed all that often – not unless you’re out walking on the beach at low tide daily.

While Japan really makes the most of seaweed – from kombu and wakame, to nori and hijike – in the west, it’s not nearly so popular, which is madness considering it’s sustainable, incredibly nutritious and offers a great source of protein (and as a result, potential substitute for meat).

Want to up your seaweed intake? The sugar dusted, cashew-topped ‘seaweed’ from the Chinese doesn’t quite count – that’s generally deep-fried cabbage, which is delicious in its own right – but here are a few other ideas…

In salad

Try a mix of rehydrated dulse and wakame with soy sauce, chilli, sesame seeds and rice wine vinegar for zingyness.

In hand-rolled sushi

You can find sheets of nori in most big supermarkets, then you just need to assemble some veg, Japanese rice and protein (swap avo for fish if you’re veggie) to build your own homemade sushi.

Make ramen

A big bowl of ramen demands a gooey ramen egg and a sheet or two of nori dunked in. Or some seaweed leaves stirred through.

Whip up some furikake

This seasoning (usually involving dried fish, seaweed and sesame seeds) will add oomph to all manner of dishes. Traditionally paired with rice, just have it on hand, whether you’re eating noodles or soup.

Pickle it

Add pizzazz to your dinner wherever you need a little more greenery with some pickled wrack.

Make veggie dashi

This Japanese fish stock can be made using seaweed instead, for a plant-based alternative.

Add seaweed salt

If you’re just starting your seaweed education, begin by adding seaweed flavoured salt to dishes. Before you know it, you’ll be hooked.

Experiment with laverbread

Welsh classic laverbread involves boiled seaweed that’s then rolled in oatmeal. Arguably it’s an acquired taste, but is great for breakfast.

Eat it like bacon

Some people claim dulse makes a decent substitute for bacon – we’ll leave you to your own judgement on that one…