Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Seaweed caviar

Having spent the past couple of days writing about caviar - and bemoaning the fact that my budget doesn't run to even the less expensive farmed stuff (which in fact makes up practically all the caviar that's on sale these days) - it was good to discover that there's a low cost substitute: seaweed caviar which I was sent by Porter Foods of Wallington in Surrey.

My first reaction was that there was no way this could give an iota of the gratification of the real thing and that's true but that doesn't mean it's not a perfectly good product. It does taste faintly fishy and the texture IS - amazingly - bubbly. It would be fine for canapés, served Russian-style with chopped egg and onion or dolloped on top of a baked or boiled potato and sour cream. And it's only 80 calories per 100g which makes it the perfect diet food (so long as you hold the sour cream and spuds, obviously)

The main downside - and it's a major one - is that it's not vegetarian which seems to me to be missing a trick with any caviar-craving veggies out there. It contains cod liver oil, squid ink and 'black caviar flavour' which may or may not be fish-based. And while I accept that seaweed contains health-giving vitamins and minerals I'm not wholly convinced by the claim on the jar that it's "loaded with antibiotic properties", a quasi-medical claim I'm surprised they can make.

Still, if you want a dinner party conversation-stopper it fits the bill nicely. And at £5.99 it won't break the bank.



  1. You can buy this from the Virtual Farmers' Market www.vfmuk.com - lovely!

  2. I understand why real Caviar is insanely expensive, if not practically unobtainable. Why, however, is Salmon keta caviar so expensive here too?

    We farm salmon, this stuff, should be as cheap here as it is in Russia. Do you happen to know a decent source anywhere in the UK, using your contacts? I only know of Caspian Caviar an online company.

    That moan aside, another interesting find Fiona. Although I think I would prefer not to buy something quite so artificial. This stuff might go nicely with that Japanese wine though! lol...

  3. The best caviar substitute I've tried is one which used to be called Avruga which I think is now called Onuga http://www.onuga.co.uk/ I think Waitrose stocks it. Given it's not the subtlest product I think I'd go for vodka though rather than wine!

  4. I have found a seaweed caviar that is vegetarian

  5. Found a great source for seaweed caviar, great selection, affordable and this one is truly the best out there:


  6. I like the fact that sea weeds can be an alternative in ensuring our health. Thanks for the info.