"These are the most exciting additions to my store cupboard for years – AND they do us good. That has to be a winning ticket" - Sarah Raven
Earlier this summer Xa spent two inspiring days in the kitchen with multi talented cook, gardener, broadcaster Sarah Raven; who had asked to be shown the rudiments of identifying seaweed and guidance as to how they worked in the kitchen.
Xa's notes: We experimented with fresh versus dried seaweed in the recipe, and concluded that the flavour punch was delivered more successfully from the dried version (ten to one flavour ratio). The fresh seaweed imparted a milder herbier taste which we found uninteresting. Dried seaweed packed a flavour bomb of umami marine tastiness. You could even be fooled that it was anchovy paste not seaweed. Sarah and I were both transported back to the tea table with memories of our dads, who both loved Gentleman’s Relish. A spread that is seldom seen in delis and has almost fallen out of fashion, but when updated, we believe earns its place back at the table.
2 tbsp fresh white breadcrumbs
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 pinch ground cinnamon
1 pinch freshly ground nutmeg
1 pinch ground mace
1 pinch ground ginger
¼ tsp crumbled dried oregano
Place dried seaweed place in a bowl, cover with hot water and set aside to re-constitute for 30 mins.
Transfer the seaweed to a pan along with the soaking water.
Then bring to a boil and cook for about 30 mins or until the seaweed breaks down to a slurry.
Drain, then place the seaweed in a food processor and render to a paste (add enough of cooking liquid so get a stiff slurry)
Stir in breadcrumbs, spices and pepper then spoon paste into a large ramekin. Cover and chill in fridge before serving.
Can be added to scrambled eggs, toast etc. Can be used in any recipe that calls for Japanese seaweed paste, momoya.
Click here for more Sarah Raven recipes with Mara seaweed