3 Japanese Seaweed Soups You Should Try
“Misoshiru (味噌汁)” or miso soup is a quintessential Japanese soup dish that is well recognized in many countries, and as with miso soup, we often have seaweed soup too.
When it comes to the seaweed we commonly eat in daily life, “nori (海苔)” or seaweed laver is well-known, which, as you know, is an essential ingredient for making sushi and onigiri.
Not only that, wakame and kombu are also the most commonly used, and mozuku and mekabu are widely enjoyed as well. Accordingly, quite a few varieties of seaweed soup can be seen in Japan.
3 Must-Try Japanese Seaweed Soups
Today, for seaweed soup beginners, out of those, let me introduce three popular, must-try Japanese seaweed soups.
In Japan, wakame has been eaten since ancient times. It was mentioned in “Manyoshu (万葉集)”, Japan’s oldest anthology compiled about 1200 years ago.
At the time, wakame was not only for edible use but was also used in Shinto rituals, for example, when praying for a good harvest.
Today, there are two styles of wakame soups in Japan; One comes in miso soup, while the other is seasoned with soy sauce and salt.
Boiled wakame is soft, tender, and almost tasteless. It is known as a low-calorie healthy food and is a good source of dietary fibers.
Mozuku is one of the seaweeds most often consumed in Japan. It is typically vinegared with sanbaizu sauce, and the dish is called “Mozukusu (もずく酢)”.
Although mozuku looks like thin noodles, it has a pleasantly crunchy texture and is a little slimy.
Mozuku is sometimes prepared for miso soup, but the seaweed is more often used in clear soup dishes.
Tororo Kombu Soup
Tororo kombu, literally grated yam kelp, is a processed food consisting of dried kelp shavings. When hot water is poured, the seaweed flakes become mushy like grated yam.
Tororo kombu can be used in various ways. It is sometimes used in onigiri as a replacement for nori and is often used in soup dishes.
The basic way to make tororo kombu soup is simple; First, put some tororo kombu in a bowl and pour boiling water.
Then, season it with soy sauce, and as a finishing touch, garnish it with toppings like umeboshi and chopped green onions.