Sugar Kelp (Laminaria saccharina)
Sugar kelp has similar qualities to normal kombu. While the white powdery substance on dried kombu (laminaria ochroleuca) is predominantly made up of sodium-based minerals, the coating on sugar kombu has a greater quantity of the sugary substance mannitol, which lends its distinctive sweetness. Sugar kelp is found in the extreme lower shore and in gullies and rock pools. It has a small holdfast and very short thin stipe which is less than 60cm long and can be easily torn off rocks in stormy weather. It can be sustainably harvested from Spring to autumn.
Other Names: Sweet Kelp/Kombu poor man’s weather glass, sea belt and kombu royale.
Type: Brown Algae Taste: Similar sea flavour to Kombu slightly Sweeter.
Texture: Fleshy consistency, slightly Crunchy, pleasant to chew.
To rehydrate: Soak in cold water for up to 10 mins. The soaking liquid can also be used.
Salted: Wash the salt off thoroughly before use.
Fresh: Rinse gently before use.
Can be used dry (wipe gently before use), fresh (or rehydrate) or cooked – simmer for up to 40mins.
Boil/Steam: Simmer for up to 30mins then serve as a vegetable with butter.
Cool, slice and add to salads.
Boil with beans to make Asian bean desserts and ice creams.
Pickling: Adding Sugar kelp to vegetables while pickling them adds a pleasant depth and savouriness to the finished dish. Pickled kelp can be used in place of comichon or capers to make tarter sauce.
Bake: Bake to create a sweet snack.
USES: Can be used in a similar way to Kombu.
Goes well with Beans, Butternut Squash, Vegetables, Butter.
High in: Iodine, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium.
Contains: Iron, Sodium, Chromium, Fibre, Protein.
Vitamins: A, C, D, E, K, B complex.