Something I don’t think I have shared with you is that I love sushi. Mom is the one who introduced me to this tasty cuisine. I was an immediate fan. It is another one of the things only the girls in my family enjoy. Sushi is so beautiful. It is definitely an art form. I know many of you are wrinkling up your nose thinking raw fish? But I promise raw fish is so mild, it is the cooking of the fish that brings out its strong “fishy” flavor. Try it you might like it.
Now Seaweed Salad is something I learned to love. The first time I tried it the sushi chef sent it to the table, we did not order it. I was not a fan. Then one day I went to dinner with some new sushi fans, my friend’s husband raved about the Seaweed Salad at this restaurant. So I decided to give it another try. It was so good. I really like the briny sea flavor. The dressing is delicious and I love the toasted sesame with the soy sauce.
Texture is something I am still learning about. Some seaweed has a soft texture almost slick. Others have a firm almost crunchy texture. I am a fan of something in between, a little chewy or squidgy. Problem is I don’t know my seaweed by name yet. They are all dark almost black green when dried, quite hard to identify. I get the seaweed (wakame) at an Asian market. I have bought it in two forms; whole and shredded. You really don’t know its size, color or texture until it is re-constituted. This is where the Trick comes in. When you plunge the dried seaweed in the water it comes alive! SPOOKY!!!! Kids would love this part. It moves and grows to three times it size, so amazing to watch. The whole wakame needs to have the spine of the leaves removed and be sliced thin. This is the texture I think I like best. It is more like what the restaurants serve. The shredded variety is what I used today and you can see it was a mix of seaweed and already chopped. It almost looks like spring mix salad greens. It has a mix of textures. Both taste great with the savory nutty dressing. The seaweed almost absorbs the dressing so don’t worry if it looks like a lot of dressing. I make the dressing two ways. The basic recipe is mild and I think let’s the briny sea flavor shine. But if you add some garlic and red pepper you get a little spicy heat, also very good. Now you have to try it to decide if this is a Trick or a Treat. For me it is a definite Treat.
3/4 oz dried wakame
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
3 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
Optional (for heat):
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
Soak dried wakame according to package directions. Drain thoroughly and place in a bowl.
Mix vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, and ginger in a bowl until sugar is dissolved. Add garlic and red pepper flakes if using.
Pour the dressing over the wakame and mix to combine. Chill in refrigerator. Sprinkle with scallions and toasted sesame seeds prior to serving.