Out of all the sea vegetables I tried on the Oregon coast, I would have to say Dilsea californica was my favorite to eat raw. This seaweed has lovingly been called teriyaki weed by Dr. John Kallas of Wild Food Adventures. It literally tastes like you are eating a piece of teriyaki flavored beef jerky, without the stringy chewiness. Its substantial meaty flavor is only offset by the fact that there isn’t that much of it growing.
It can be difficult to tell sea vegetables apart, and there is one other red algae that looks similar to the teriyaki weed. It is called Iridia (Mazzaella splendins), but its blades tend to be wider and its telltale characteristic is that under the water it has an iridescent quality. The Iridia is good to eat, but I don’t think it was the season for it.
The above photo is of a brown algae named stir fry seaweed (Ahnfeltiopsis linearis) by Dr. John Kallas. One interesting thing I noticed when drying my wild-crafted sea vegetables is that the teriyaki weed had a green powder on its surface, while the stir fry seaweed had a white powder left on its surface. None of the others, such as wekame (Alaria marginata) and nori (Porphyra spp) had any dried powdery residue. Can anyone shed some light on this for me? If so, please leave a comment below.