We get it, you may not know where to start with seaweed in the kitchen, so we're sharing a few tips to get you inspired to incorporate this delicious, healthy sea-veggie into your everyday meals.
With hundreds of varieties to choose from, this superfood is packed with essential nutrients to improve overall health. It is an especially good source of iodine, which helps with thyroid function. Seaweed also contains iron, calcium, vitamin C, and vitamin A to name a few, and each type of seaweed touts its own specific benefits.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine certain varieties of seaweed are used in herbal formulas to help reduce internal masses, swelling, and edema. The salty flavor is said to have a dispersing effect to help soften hardness, dispel phlegm, and promote urination in the body.
Pictured above are some widely used varieties of edible seaweed, from left to right: kombu, dulse, wakame.
Kombu is often used to flavor broths and is responsible for the elusive umami flavor. Add it to any broth at home to kick the flavor up a notch.
Dulce, a red seaweed, can be used in a variety of ways. Try adding it to your next stir-fry or soup. It would work well as an addition to any of our broths, or toast it up and add it to a bowl of popcorn for a fun movie night snack.
Finally we have wakame, the type of seaweed you will most often come across in seaweed salads or miso soup. You can use it to make your own restaurant versions at home! Add it to our Miso Ramen Broth with cubed tofu and scallions for a traditional miso soup, or toss it with some rice wine vinegar and Tokyo Ramen for a unique seaweed noodle salad.
You'll find these seaweed varieties in the Asian Foods aisle at most Whole Foods Markets or specialty retailers in dried form. Keep in mind that once you add them to liquid they will soften and expand.