When I went to Shell Knob, MO, U.S.A., 44 years ago for the first time when I was 18 to stay with an American family (now I am calling them my second family because I believe I was reborn and reeducated there), when I talked about the Japanese food custom of eating see weeds, though they uttered nice words, I felt they were mildly (or I bet some of them even extremely) disgusted by the idea of eating them. Though I was in the “SHOW ME” state, they didn’t even care to say, “show me!”
Now time has changed. When I “lived” in the States last year, I saw so many things “kaled” everywhere, especially in “health-conscious” markets like the Whole foods. I never walked through any produce sections without seeing some kale. I thought to myself now we cannot diss Japanese people for eating seaweeds because we are eating land-weeds here. Now American people are starting to raid on “kelp,” aka, in Japan, “Kombu.”
I am watching CBSN news live as usual, eating my make-shift street cart food of NYC (I sometimes buy chili beans with pork from the nearby supermarket where I can find some imported foods and wrap them with some fresh vegetables, cheese, and rice in a soft taco shell) then they are introducing kelp as the next big thing.
Wait, what? Kombu! Wow! So what the heck is kelp? It is some kind of sea-weed. We usually put them in Japanese style shoyu-based boiled dishes. We so often use dried kelp for soup stock. If you like Japanese dishes, you sure like the taste of it because almost every soup of Japan has it as a basic ingredient.
Now I am not sure k will transpire as “the next big thing” but it is good for your health. I can vouch for that because my grandmother who is 105 years old this year loves it!