Seaweed salad is my favourite Japanese side dish. The seaweed salad is bold in flavour with the naturally salty seaweed paired with toasted sesame oil and rice vinegar. Seaweed salad is, in my opinion, very expensive when purchased pre-made. Luckily, it is very easy, and much less costly, to make at home. Although, many different varieties of seaweed can be used for salad, it can be difficult to find the most popular type. After years of searching, I finally found some at the Asian grocery store chain, T & T. Check the refrigerators and the freezers. Also, I haven’t been able to figure out why the restaurants’ seaweed is always so much greener in colour. If you know the reason behind this, please let me know in a comment! Thanks so much!
Japanese Seaweed Salad Recipe
makes 4 to 6 servings; adapted from here
2 cups fresh or frozen wakame, thawed OR 3/4 cup dried, cut wakame, rehydrated in water
1 to 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 to 3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 to 3 tablespoons soy sauce
pinches of granulated white sugar (up to 1 teaspoon)
pinch of dried red chili flakes
toasted white sesame seeds (for garnish)
Rinse the seaweed very well in a colander under cool running water and set aside to drain. Use your hands to squeeze the excess water out of the seaweed. Meanwhile, in a medium sized bowl, mix together the sugar, soy sauce, and rice vinegar to taste. Start with 1 tablespoon of each. The amounts you will use will depend on the brand of seasonings you’re using, the saltiness of the seaweed, and on your personal tastes. Personally, I only used 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, because the saltiness of the seaweed is enough for me. Once you like the balance of salty, sweet, and sour, then add the sesame oil and dried chili flakes to taste. Personally, I like the sesame oil to be the prominent flavour. Add the seaweed to the dressing and toss it gently until well combined. Adjust the seasonings to taste. Then refrigerate the seaweed salad for at least overnight prior to serving cold or at room temperature. Just prior to serving, garnish with some toasted white sesame seeds.