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Sea Vegetables

"All dripping in tangles green
Cast up by a lonely sea
If pure for that, O Weed,
Bitterer, too, are ye?
--Herman Melville, "The Tuft of Kelp,"
John Marr and Other Sailors

The most popular edible seaweeds used in soups fall into three categories: Brown algae (Phaeophyta), Red algae (Rhodophyta), and Green algae (Chlorophyta), though Blue Green algae (Cyanophyta) is also collected and eaten.

Among the most popular brown algaes are:

  • Wakame/miyok, Undaria pinnatifida and Petalonia fascia
  • Edible kelps/kombu that are the foundation of Japan's famed dashi soup broth--Alarias, Laminarias, and Kyellmaniellas
  • Hijiki/Nongmichae

Red algaes:

  • Irish Moss, Chondra crispus
  • Dulse, Palmaria palmata
  • Red laver/nori, Porphyra

Green algaes:

  • Green nori
  • Awo nori

More to come on this subject!