Soooo good… special thanks to my friend Yoshie who contributed this recipe.
Wakame is seaweed sold in small packages wherever Asian foods or health foods are sold. It almost looks like black tea leaves. A little goes a long way: once you put water on wakame, it expands to 20x its original size! If you have ever had a seaweed salad at a Japanese restaurant, it probably had a lot of wakame in it. Shiitake mushrooms are best bought in their dried form. For some reason, they are far more flavorful. Also, there is the advantage of dried shiitake and wakame having a very long shelf life.
Makes 1 large or 2 small salads
2 Tablespoons wakame, dried
1/2 cup dried shiitake mushrooms — break them into smaller pieces with your fingers
3/4 cups water
1 Tablespoon julienned carrot
3/4 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 Tablespoon apple cider or rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sesame seed oil
Salt to taste
Reconstitute wakame and shiitake in a small bowl with 3/4 cup water. Let sit for about 20 minutes. Drain off excess water, add carrot and sesame seeds.
Make the dressing by microwaving all dressing ingredients in a very small bowl or cup for 40 seconds, or until sugar melts. You could also use 1/2 teaspoon of agave nectar in place of sugar and not use the microwave at all. Toss dressing with wakame/shiitake mixture, add salt to taste.