Dulse, a type of seaweed, is fed to young abalone, Cultured Abalone, Goleta, California. (Photo by: Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Food - Drink
Dulse: The Mineral-Rich Sea Veggie That Tastes A Lot Like Bacon
For thousands of years, coastal communities in Japan, China, various Nordic countries, and the Caribbean have included sea vegetables in their diets. One lesser-known sea vegetable is dulse (Palmaria palmata), a member of the red seaweed family that is characterized by its red-brown color and smoky flavor that's reminiscent of bacon.
Dulse can be eaten raw, but is often dried, which adds more complexity for a mild, oceanic flavor with a savory, smoky essence. It makes a great addition to eggs, potatoes, and popcorn, or you can pan-fry a raw dulse leaf to play up the bacon vibe, though it's very hard to find raw leaves unless you know someone who harvests them.
Like all sea vegetables, dulse is very nutritious, packed with fiber, protein, healthy fatty acids, all nine essential amino acids, iron, potassium, several B vitamins, and vitamins A, E, and C. Dulse produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions than land-based plants and absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, de-acidifying our oceans.
Dulse is even a member of the vitally important food group known as “blue foods,” meaning it's a key element in the United Nations' goals of repairing the global food supply system. As previously mentioned, dulse is easier to find dried than fresh; look at online retailers like Maine Coast Sea Vegetables or Whole Foods.