Ingredient Name: Seaweed sometimes also known as kelp
Traditional Chinese Name: 海藻 (hǎi zǎo)
Edible Name: 紫菜 (Zicai)
What is this?
- A type of marine algae that grows in the ocean (salt water and light required)
- Seaweed resembles and looks like plants
- For soups, seaweed are dried sheets of Porphyra (a type of red algae used in Wales to make laver)
How do I prepare it?
- Remove the sheets of seaweed from the package and soak in cool water for at least an hour to rehydrate
- Rinse the seaweed a few times to remove any dirt and debris
Where can I buy this?
- You can purchase sheets of seaweed at most Asian supermarkets
What is the cost?
- A package of 4-5 sheets of seaweed can cost aorund $5.00 – $6.00 CAD
- Peanuts are an ideal substitute (although be weary of allergies), but they are not as sweet
- Walnuts are also another ideal substitute
- Seaweed is a known source of iodine and Vitamin B12 – necessary for thyroid function and blood cell function
- It also contains trace minerals such as calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc
- It is said to assist in cleansing the body of toxic pollutants
- Seaweed also helps in overcoming poor digestion and prevents osteoporosis
- It is effective against bronchitis and coughs
- Be sure to buy seaweed from a reputable source
- Seaweed is considered “cold” to the Chinese
- Dried seaweed stores very well in dry weather and can keep unrefridgerated for up to 6 months
- Once the seaweed is soaked and hydrated, it is best to use it immediately