It seems that the West has caught on to what Koreans have known for ages.
by Rachelle a.k.a. "Roach"
You know that seaweed stuff? It’s pretty delicious. Oh, and really good for you. From Monterey Bay to New York City, chefs, foodies, brewers and roasters are realizing that the possibilities for kelp are endless. These days, you can chug a seaweed beer in Scotland or pick up a kelp coffee in Maine. And all the coolest kids at the playground have ditched the Cheetos in favor of SeaSnax. It’s no surprise that the superfood has gotten the attention. It’s chock-full of nutrients like Vitamins A, C, and B-12, the latter of which can be tough to find in non-animal sources. It’s also a great source of protein, calcium, and iron – all great for bone and muscle health, making us believe Popeye was eating more than just spinach out on that boat.
Of course, if you’re a fan of Korean food, you’re already in on the secret - Koreans love eating miyeok and gim/kim. But just in case you need a seaweed refresher, or a guide to some seaweed recipes and snacks, keep reading: Miyeok Guk, Seaweed Soup (with beef or seafood) This is one of those simple, steaming Korean meals that is both comforting and healthy. Women often eat this in the days after they have given birth, because it is so full of the important vitamins and iron that they need to replenish. It's also a tradition for people to eat this on their birthdays! Korean cooking goddess Maangchi has a great, easy-to-follow recipe for it.
There's also a cold version of this soup for the summer!
Miyeok Muchim (Seaweed Salad)
One of the most popular side dishes, or banchan, especially during the summer! Pringles, The Seaweed Flavor So these might not exactly pack the nutritional punch of actual seaweed, but it’s nice to know we can always count on Pringles to deliver in the unique flavor department.
Kimbap Kimbap! It’s the Korean version of a sushi roll, it’s easy and cheap to pick up for a healthy meal, and it’s straight-up delicious. The insides are full of all kinds of glorious stuff, like rice with kimchi or veggies or loads of tuna and mayo. But the piece de resistance is, of course, the seaweed wrap. Here, thin dried seaweed works as the wrapper that turns kimbap into an efficient roll instead of a blob of rice and veggies. Roasted Seaweed Snacks Seaweed doesn’t have to be complicated. These plain old seaweed snacks might not look too exciting – maybe add a little rice and kimchi or try the bulgogi flavor if you’re feeling kind of wild – but they’re super satisfying and quintessentially Korean all on their own.
Got any more seaweed recipes or snacks that we simply must devour? Let us know immediately! ~~ Rachelle, also known as “Roach” among her friends, is a freelance writer based in NYC. She loves trying to cook Korean food but then giving up and heading to Flushing for the good stuff. You can check out more of her work at stuffroachknows.com.