Roasted or Toasted Seaweed Snacks (Gim)
Definition of GIM: Laver or Dried Seaweed (Nori in Japanese)
Ever since Trader Joe’s came in to New York City, I see people eating those toasted seaweed snacks everywhere. I get them occasionally, but I usually just make them at home. I like them right off the heat – super crispy and warm. That how I’ve always eaten them.
Growing up, my grandmother made these seaweed snacks (simply known as “gim” in Korea) at least 2-3 times a week. I remember her brushing oil and sprinkling salt on dried seaweed. She would then roll them up and wrap them tightly with aluminum foil until she was ready to toast them over fire. Even with the prepackaged seaweed snacks readily available in stores, she would always make them at home. She was adamant that fried foods or foods cooked in oil should be consumed right away – not packaged for shipping! My grandmother was a smart cookie. Heat does accelerate the rancidity of oils after all!
Besides, these seaweed snacks are very easy to make. I love Trader Joe’s as much as (or even more than) the next person, but the homemade stuff is so much better in taste and in health. You can use as much or as little oil and salt as you’d like. And you can experiment with different types of oils and salts. I usually use 1:1 ratio of canola and sesame oil. But you can just use canola oil or sesame oil alone. Grapeseed oil can be used in place of canola oil as well. And I almost always use pink Himalayan salt.
Additionally, you can use different types of cooking methods. You can toast them directly over medium heat/fire (I don’t recommend this unless you are an expert or own a nice flat grilling basket with a handle). You can toast them in a pan. Or you can roast them in the oven. Whichever method you choose, they will taste delicious. Simply enjoy them as a snack or enjoy them as a part of a wrap. Personally, I love wrapping some brown rice and pickled vegetables with them. So yummy!
Toasted (or Roasted) Seaweed Snacks Recipe
8 sheets gim (laver, dried seaweed, or nori)
1 TB canola oil
1 TB sesame oil
- Stir together canola oil and sesame oil in a small bowl. Place one sheet of laver on parchment paper or aluminum foil. Brush the laver lightly with oil with a basting brush. Salt the laver lightly. Place the second laver ON TOP OF the first laver. Repeat with oil and salt. Repeat with rest of the laver.
- Roll up the laver sheets. Wrap them up tightly in parchment or aluminum foil until you’re ready to toast them (15 minutes – 1 hour). This will allow the laver to “marinate,” allowing the oil and salt to absorb evenly.
- Heat a large pan over medium heat. Once heated, place one sheet of laver on the pan. Allow the bottom side to toast until it turns a greenish hue. Turn over the laver using a spatula or tongs once the first side is toasted and allow the other side to toast. Once laver is crisp and toasted on both sides, take it out of the pan. Repeat with rest of the laver. *
- Once toasted, stack them on top of one another and cut into rectangles (or other shape you choose) using a sharp knife or kitchen shears.
On medium heat, it should take about 45 seconds – 1 minute per side. On low heat (not simmer), it should take about 1 minute – 1 1/2 minutes per side. However, this is just a guideline as stove top temperatures may vary.
You can also roast them in seconds directly over medium heat/fire (my grammy’s method, and probably the best :-)), if you have a flat grilling basket with a handle. Alternatively, you can roast the seaweed in the oven for about 15 minutes (depending on the oven) at 250-275 degrees. If you are roasting them in the oven, you can cut the seaweed into smaller pieces before you put them in the oven. You can flip them over after about 5-7 minutes, but you don’t need to flip them if you are using a baking rack.
Additionally, you are oiling and salting ONLY ONE SIDE of the laver! The oil and salt will distribute evenly on both sides by the virtue of the method in preparation.